Category Archives: politics

checks and balances

The US Constitution established a Federal government with powers divided to provide checks and balances. Clearly this system of checks and balances has been largely eroded.

The laws passed by Congress have delegated its legislative responsibilities to the Executive branch. Laws are written that grant regulation writing power to the Executive. Laws are written that delegate the power to start offensive wars.

The Executive branch routinely issues executive orders and waivers that either nullify the enforcement of existing laws or rewrite them. Executive orders are often used to initiate the enforcement of rules that are in effect new laws that have not been passed by Congress.

The Supreme Court has been toothless in defending the Constitution by limiting the Federal government to the powers expressly granted. This raises the question, why would we even have an expectation that the Supreme Court should have jurisdiction to rule on matters of law for which the Federal government has not been granted any power. When all powers not expressly granted to the Federal government are reserved to the States and the People, it should be clear that the US Supreme Court should be similarly limited. Would it not make sense for State Supreme Courts to retain ultimate authority for all such matters instead of deferring to the US Supreme Court?

When the Executive branch oversteps its authority, what possible remedy is possible, when it requires a super-majority of Congress to impeach, and the US Supreme Court is largely deferential to Congress and the Executive?

We are left to resort to State nullification by the sovereign states and jury nullification by sovereign individuals. Through these means we can safeguard the powers that are reserved to the States and the People, when the Federal government has betrayed us and the Constitution to which they pledged to defend.

how to vote

To decide which candidate to vote for, we have to determine the criteria we use for evaluating candidates. From how candidates campaign and how the media reports on these campaigns, we are led to believe that we are choosing our representative of ideal human. This is a faulty premise.

Voting for a political candidate is expressing a preference for that candidate to fill a position. The candidate is applying to fill a job opening, and we are evaluating candidates to hire the one most qualified. We should apply criteria that are relevant and appropriate for this evaluation, and refrain from misapplying criteria that are irrelevant or inappropriate. Is it appropriate to hire or disqualify a candidate based on gender, religion, race, or sexual preference? Of course not.

The US Constitution defines precisely the role of the federal government and its elected officials. Defending the Constitution entails the recognition of the limited authority that is granted to the federal government, while liberty is protected by recognizing the rights of the individual. The powers that sovereign individuals grant to the federal government are enumerated, while the rights of the individual are unlimited. Therefore, the proper way to evaluate a political candidate is to consider first and foremost how faithfully they understand and defend the Constitution. Then, evaluate how qualified that candidate is capable of performing the limited responsibilities of that office, while never overstepping the authority granted to the office by the Constitution.

If a Presidential candidate talks about how to be a responsible civilian leader of the military in the role of Commander-in-Chief, that candidate is expressing qualifications.

If a Presidential candidate talks about faithfully enforcing the laws passed by Congress, when those laws are pursuant to the Constitution, that candidate is expressing qualifications.

If a candidate talks about expanding public education and green energy initiatives, that candidate is disqualified.

If a candidate talks about increasing healthcare and retirement benefits through a government-run Ponzi scheme, that candidate is disqualified.

If a candidate talks about using taxpayer funds or debt to stimulate the economy or to improve your community, your family, or your life, that candidate is disqualified. Bribery is corrupt, and doing so during a job interview should be astonishing. Not only is the candidate disqualified, the candidate should be charged with criminal behavior.

If a candidate talks about being a likable, generous, and charitable member of the community, that candidate is lobbying for the job of celebrity but offering no substantial qualifications for the office.

We should not be seeking an admirable model citizen, who exemplifies our moral principles and projects our image of an ideal American. Doing so betrays our obligation to defend the Constitution. A candidate who asks for our trust in all things is asking for license to act with unlimited power. We don’t need someone who demands that degree of trust. We don’t need someone with a personality and appearance that we find likable. We only need someone to perform a very limited job function for a fixed term.

The Constitution tells us exactly how we must vote. Now, if only voters would recognize that fact, they would then be equipped to fulfill their own pledge of allegiance, which implies a commitment to defend the Constitution.

on the rights of a fetus

Living cells do not per se have a right (protected freedom) to life for the same reason a virus or a mouse has no right to life.

Rights are a recognition of requirements for a person to live as a human which means freedom to think and act toward sustaining that life. Non-humans do not have rights, because they are incapable of recognizing rights. Without that recognition, there can be no rights, as their abrogation would immediately ensue through force, coercion, and other manners of violation.

A fetus is not yet capable of living in any way as a thinking, acting person in that sense. Therefore, it has no rights to do so.

As litmus test, can a fetus given rights (freedom without mom) perform the most basic biological acts of sustaining its own life? No. The fetus cannot oxygenate its blood, eliminate its toxins, convert food into a form that can power its cells, and any number of other biological functions that mom is performing on its behalf. If given the freedom to live as a person per se, the fetus cannot perform the most basic actions to sustain its life, it does not have rights, because no recognition of such requirements for it to live and no protection of its freedom will make any difference. The fetus does not need freedom at this stage in its life; it is entirely dependent on its mother.

To artificially bestow a “right” to life on the fetus is merely granting an entitlement to enslave the life of its mother, if the mother does not consent to participate in the pregnancy. This would not be protecting anyone’s freedom—only taking freedom away from the mother.

I am anti-abortion and pro-rights. Therefore, I am for a woman’s right to choose, no matter how much I dislike abortion. My opposition or dislike for something does not automatically mean support for government action to outlaw it. Because the law must exist to protect individual rights, any law that would abrogate rights must never be passed.

My position on abortion is consistent with other similar positions. I am an anti-smoking non-smoker, but I oppose legislation that would ban smoking. I am anti-drug and I do not use drugs, but I oppose the war on drugs. These positions consistently recognize that the law must exist to protect individual rights, not to trample on individual liberties.

When does a fetus become a person with rights? I believe the earliest that can happen is when a fetus becomes viable. That is, when it is medically possible for the fetus to survive when physically separated from its mother. This may involve the assistance of medical devices, medication, and extraordinary measures. The key criterion is the ability for the baby to live without being tied to the mother’s life. At that point, the baby’s life can be sustained by other means, and adoption becomes an option. As medical technology improves, this may happen at earlier stages of gestation. This would be the reasoning behind objecting to late term abortion.

$114.5T unfunded liabilities

I just thought of a solution to the $114.5T unfunded liability problem in the US federal government balance sheet.

Given that entitlements due to retirement will bust the federal budget over time; given that people who perform purposeful work live longer and remain in better health than those who do not; given that people who continue to work will contribute to tax revenues instead of drawing on entitlements; my solution entails…

(1) Offer future retirees the option to defer retirement indefinitely.

(2) Remove regulatory barriers and provide legal protections for the elderly who want to work after the age of retirement.

(3) Most important to solving the budget problem, provide an incentive for the elderly to continue working by lowering personal income tax rates for employment income to zero.

By keeping the elderly employed, their health insurance continues to be employer subsidized, which eliminates their participation in Medicare. By continuing to work, they also forego receiving Social Security payments. As a bonus of participating in the work force, they continue to contribute to tax revenues through payroll taxes paid by their employers.

Certain industries will greatly benefit from the retention of employees with scarce skills, which are not being replenished in the work force. For example, COBOL programmers. As baby boomers retire, certain legacy technologies which will remain mission critical for decades are at risk of being under serviced. This proposal would provide some degree of relief for these industries as a side-benefit.

Above The law

  • Obama administration in contempt of court for withholding deepwater drilling permits http://goo.gl/0YjXQ
  • Obama administration declines to enforce immigration laws http://goo.gl/4W5SfAG
  • Eric Holder drops charges against New Black Panthers (“my people”) for 2008 voter intimidation http://goo.gl/13r4r
  • Obama administration pushing Cap & Trade regulations via EPA despite lack of authority from Congress http://goo.gl/kLQgU 
  • Obama administration continues to prosecute war against Libya without authorization of Congress http://goo.gl/pHzO0 ; also, George Will: Is Obama above the law? http://goo.gl/lIcok
  • Obama violated Constitution in bypassing Congress and using UN and NATO to authorize war http://goo.gl/xX3Pp
  • Obama administration’s “disruption of the bankruptcy laws will do long-term damage to the economy” http://goo.gl/as7Ss
  • HHS grants Obamacare waivers without any authorization granted by the law http://goo.gl/UOb4b
  • Barney Frank helped land a job at Fannie Mae for his then live-in boyfriend, Herb Moses http://goo.gl/2hnjO
  • Obama continues to ignore presidential obligations under the Medicare Reform Act of 2003 http://www.rove.com/articles/320
  • Obama conducts covert war in Yemen without authorization of Congress http://goo.gl/uEFDF
  • DOJ ignores subpoena for gunrunning, now being investigated for obstruction of justice http://goo.gl/KNdsV
  • Will Obama use US taxpayer money to bailout foreign entities via the IMF without complying with the provisions of the Dodd-Frank law? http://goo.gl/M4Zbt
  • Obama violates law that disallows fundraising from White House http://goo.gl/K46rd
  • Obama DoJ harassing Gibson guitars using foreign laws, not even at the request of the foreign government http://bit.ly/qn1Elg
  • Obama DoD 2 yr late to issue Taiwan airpower report as required by law http://goo.gl/rQrJ9
  • Holder perjured himself to Congress when testifying about Fast and Furious http://goo.gl/ujvX5
  • EPA violated Information Quality Act to regulate greenhouse gases http://goo.gl/K1yTi
  • Obama Refuses to Release bin Laden Death Photos as required by FOIA http://goo.gl/0BaKf
  • Emperor Obama: ‘We Can’t Wait’ for the Constitutional Process and the Representative Rule of Law http://goo.gl/KGXxB
  • White House refuses to cooperate with subpoena requesting docs related to $535M loan to Solyndra http://goo.gl/LGtQ5
  • Eric Holder may be an accomplice to murder over Fast and Furious http://goo.gl/DfAYH
  • DEA laundered hundreds of millions of dollars for drug cartels http://goo.gl/RGTpi
  • Confessions of Perjury Inside DOJ http://goo.gl/nChPKObama to Congress: I’ll decide what’s constitutional http://goo.gl/nTOBN
  • DOJ prosecutors accepted bribes from corrupt finance execs, but never arrested or prosecuted http://goo.gl/DeQSY
  • Obama’s FCC and SEC enforcing Net Neutrality in defiance of DC Circuit Court’s unanimous ruling http://goo.gl/Ummzu
  • Obama seeks to fund UNESCO in defiance of Congress http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/obamas-disregard-for-those-pesky-things-called-laws/2012/03/08/gIQAHIA61R_story.html
  • Obama appoints fundraisers as ambassadors in violation of Foreign Service Act of 1980 http://goo.gl/p4ARJ
  • Obama sends funding to Palestinian Authority terrorist organization against legal restrictions http://goo.gl/BZbyH
  • Obama admin is tampering with witness in BP top kill sabotage by Steven Chu http://goo.gl/nxvUq
  • Obama bribed Jeremiah Wright to be quiet http://goo.gl/Bl0vF
  • Obama admin suspends deporting illegal immigrants as required by law http://goo.gl/Azb9C
  • Obama admin guts welfare reform work requirement http://goo.gl/ZA2uX
  • Obama ignored the mandatory work requirement under TANF welfare reform law by issuing waiver http://goo.gl/7yPL2
  • Top White House political appointees use secret email accounts. http://goo.gl/aM3BX

symmetry and asymmetry

I am completely supportive of stooping to the depths of whatever hell the opposition is willing to inhabit in retaliation. This principle applies to both intellectual exchanges and kinetic military action. As a civilized society, we cannot allow ourselves to believe that we are somehow “above” resorting to brutality to respond in kind to savages, who employ such tactics. Doing so invites asymmetric conflict, which the opposition will happily exploit to our detriment.

[Originally posted on 14 Jun 2004]

When did we start considering civilians to be non-combatants? In World War 2, cities throughout Europe were devastated with strategic intent. Innocent bystanders were not immune from the life or death struggle that dominated everyone. Germany surrendered unconditionally, because its nation and its people faced annihilation. Japan surrendered unconditionally, because annihilation was already upon them. The people were accountable for their nation’s deeds, and they acted accordingly.

What happens when we offer immunity from attack to civilians? Military power can be rendered combat ineffective. By disguising combat forces as civilians, they gain an advantage. If attacked, they claim brutality, and they accuse the military of war crimes. Meanwhile, they can conduct their offensive operations, and return to the safety of civilian life. More importantly, because civilians are immune from the consequences of financing, harboring, and otherwise supporting a campaign of terrorism, there is no reason to ever surrender to the opposition. There is no possibility of military defeat, so long as the people are willing to endure prolonged economic hardship to achieve a strategic political victory.  

Terrorism takes this to an extreme. Suicide bombers die as martyrs with the peace of mind that comes from knowing that their loved ones will be compensated by the terrorist establishment, and they will be immune from retribution. There is no accountability, because we allow terrorists to get away with having nothing to lose, except for their lives, which they don’t value.

In ancient times, leaders prosecuted a policy of capital punishment for the worst criminals. Knowing that family loyalties would lead to the criminal’s closest loved ones seeking to avenge the execution, a policy was implemented to also execute three generations of direct family related to the criminal.

To combat terrorism effectively, the consequences of violent action must be dealt with harshly, not only by exterminating the terrorists, but also by punishing the loved ones on whose behalf the terrorists are acting. Civilian immunity from combat breeds cultures, which will continue sponsoring asymmetrical combat, without any reason to surrender, because there is no possibility of defeat. The people who sponsor terrorism must be required to be accountable for their loyalties. Only then will they surrender.

In summary, the policy statements to effectively counter terrorism are as follows. Kill the terrorists. Kill their families. Kill their friends. Do not stop, until they surrender. Live by the sword, die by the sword. He who shall survive will have the biggest baddest sword and the will to wield it. In a world of terror, the most terrifying shall prevail.

war of words

If the pen is a weapon, words are the ammunition. Politics is marketing, and marketing is a war of words. In both realms, the goal is to sway public opinion with ideas. A good tactic for undermining the opponent’s position is to poison the language they use to identify themselves.

For decades, whenever a leader wishes to be resolute about a cause, they declare a war as a call to arms. We have seen the war on drugs, war on crime, war on poverty, war on AIDS, war on terror, and now even a war on obesity. The indiscriminate use of war parallels the prosecution of indiscriminate wars in Bosnia, Iraq, and Libya. This enables the term “war on” to become vulnerable to poisoning, so that future use of this term becomes toxic. Furthermore, “war on” is conveniently similar to “moron”, which makes for a perfect nexus of ideas (superficial and with substance) for contaminating the term “war on”. We can now apply “war on” as a derogatory adjective; for example, should the President declare another war on something, he can properly be identified as yet another war-on President. War-on decisions become acts of foolishness and symbols of an ignorance of unintended consequences.

rise of terrorism due to UN

New Scientist: You can’t fight violence with violence

This does not explain the success of achieving the unconditional surrender of Imperial Japan and Nazi Germany in WW2. I believe the rise of terrorism as a successful strategy for insurgency is due primarily to the rules of war promoted by the UN, which forbid the targeting of civilians. Surrender in war is not a military outcome; it is a political one. Without the civilian population being faced with total annihilation, there is no reason to surrender, and resistance by this protected class can continue indefinitely.

UN junk science

The UN awarded Al Gore and UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) with the Nobel Peace Prize.

On the IPCC’s report, the Cato Institute’s article Live Earth’s Inconvenient Truths explains why it is completely junk science.

The Telegraph’s article Al Gore’s ‘nine Inconvenient Untruths’ punches a few holes in Al’s film.

Of course, the UN is a political body, so its motives are far removed from the principles of science.