Disobedience is the true foundation of liberty. The obedient must be slaves.”
Henry David Thoreau
A week ago today, I was literally cooling my jets in a freezing cold DC jail for protesting the continuation of the illegal and immoral wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. For an offense (crossing a police line) that doesn’t even have any jail time associated with the penalty, if convicted, I stayed in jail for 50 hours. I was arrested with seven others and six of us had the similar fate of spending an unreasonable amount of time in jail for standing up for peace and justice.
After spending two nights in jail, we were taken to the court building where we spent another eight hours in a holding cell in leg shackles. When we were finally summoned to the traffic courtroom our wrists were shackled to chains wrapped around our waists.
During our unfortunate incarceration, two male members of the group had to go to the hospital for numbness in their hands and fingers because of the tightness of the handcuffs. After sleeping on cold concrete for 50 hours, Elaine Brower and I were cramping up in pain.
For minor infractions, we have to return to DC for a hearing on June 9th—since my charges don’t require jail time, and since I have already done 50 hours, I wonder what penalty will be imposed for my inevitable verdict of “guilty.”
A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
The fifth and last auxiliary right of the subject, that I shall at present mention, is that of having arms for their defence, suitable to their condition and degree, and such as are allowed by law. Which is also declared by the same statute I W. & M. st.2. c.2. and is indeed a public allowance, under due restrictions, of the natural right of resistance and self-preservation, when the sanctions of society and laws are found insufficient to restrain the violence of oppression.
hat tip: AP & Fox News
The FBI conducted weekend raids in three states and arrested at least three people, and a militia leader in Michigan said the target of at least one raid was a Christian militia group.
Mar. 28: Michigan State Police guard a home in Clayton after the FBI raided the home of a suspected militia leader.
ADRIAN, Mich. — A Christian militia group was a target of at least one of a series of weekend raids the FBI conducted in Indiana, Michigan and Ohio, a Michigan militia leader says.
The FBI said Sunday that it had conducted raids in the three states, resulting in at least three arrests. Federal warrants were sealed, but a federal law enforcement official speaking on condition of anonymity said some of those arrested face gun charges and officials are pursuing other suspects. Some of the suspects were expected in court Monday.
by: Michael Boldin
hat tip: Tenth Amendment Center
March 25, 2010
Governor Gary Herbert has made Utah the third state to pass the “Health Care Freedom Act” into law. House Bill 67 (HB67) was introduced by Rep. Carl Wimmer and passed the House and Senate by votes of 53-20 and 22-7, respectively.
The bill “prohibits a state agency or department from implementing federal health care reform passed by the United States Congress after March 1, 2010, unless a state agency reports to the Legislature regarding costs and impact on state reform efforts.” It authorizes the state legislature to specifically approve or deny implementation of federal health care legislation.
In short, it requires the state “to opt out of federal reform when the state determines that opting out is in the best interest of the citizens of the state.”
Governor Otter of Idaho signed similar legislation last week, and issued the following statement:
“Congress and the White House are working out their scheme for pushing through a healthcare ‘reform’ bill that has more pages than the U.S. Constitution has words. I guarantee you that not a single member of the House or Senate has a complete understanding of that legislation any more than they understood all the implications of the USA PATRIOT Act back in 2001,” Governor Otter said. “What the Idaho Health Freedom Act says is that the citizens of our state won’t be subject to another federal mandate or turn over another part of their life to government control.”
Yesterday, Governor McDonnell signed the Virginia Health Care Freedom Act, which passed the legislature there last month.
More than 2 dozen other states are considering similar legislation or state constitutional amendments to do the same. Many legislators and governors are calling for a federal lawsuit to affirm the principles of the state laws. But some constitutional scholars, including famed legal theorist Randy Barnett, have indicated that decades of precedent from the supreme court makes such legal challenges difficult, at best.
by Chuck Baldwin
Posted on Mar 24, 2010
hat tip: Chuck Baldwin Live
Passage of the so-called “health care reform” bill in the House of Representatives this past Sunday, March 21 (I won’t even address the inferred unconstitutionality of Congress doing business on the Lord’s Day. See Article. I. Section. 7. Paragraph. 2.) drove yet another stake into the heart of America. For all intents and purposes, it is the health of the United States that is in dire need of healing. In fact, the US has been on extended life-support for decades. With its condition being rendered critical, and absent major surgery, its days are numbered. The passage of this bill only serves to further weaken an already frail Constitution.
In fact, this one may prove to be the fatal blow. Lady Liberty may never recover.
The decision by Congress to socialize medicine in the US ranks among the most draconian, most egregious, most horrific actions ever taken by the central government in Washington, D.C. This bill rocks the principles of liberty and constitutional government to the core. It changes fundamental foundations; it repudiates historical principle. Oh! The same flag may fly on our flagpoles, the same monuments may grace our landscape, and the same National Anthem may be sung during our public ceremonies, but it is not the same America. The Congress of the United States has now officially turned America into a socialist state.
On March 23, 2010, President Barack Obama signed the health care bill into law, and as such, this date–along with March 21–joins a list of dates that have each inflicted unconstitutional, socialistic, and sometimes even tyrannical action against the States United and have, therefore, contributed to the destruction of a free America.
by Danny Schechtor
hat tip: News dissector
We wish a speedy recovery to our least favorite person. CNN had it first. Former U.S. Secretary of State Henry Kissinger released from hospital in South Korea. [watch video for the “history” of Mr. Kissinger]
The IDES of March
Real Afghan Fight: How To Negotiate War’s End
Haitians Fear Future of independence
Just in case you were wondering what the IDES are, InfoPlease.com has the answer:
“The soothsayer’s warning to Julius Caesar, “Beware the Ides of March,” has forever imbued that date with a sense of foreboding. But in Roman times the expression “Ides of March” did not necessarily evoke a dark mood—it was simply the standard way of saying “March 15.” Surely such a fanciful expression must signify something more than merely another day of the year? Not so. Even in Shakespeare’s time, sixteen centuries later, audiences attending his play Julius Caesar wouldn’t have blinked twice upon hearing the date called the Ides.”
March 15 is also the 42nd anniversary of the radio station that dubbed me its dissector. Happy Anniversary, WBCN, even as your spirit and substance is now only online. Visit WBCN.com and click on FreeFormBCN: 1968 – 1990 It’s all the music from back in the day, thanks to DJ extraordinaire, Sam Kopper.
Welcome to the Ides, anyway. Daylight savings is here but will we ever get a season of truth? As the seventh anniversary of the war on Iraq approaches—actually it started well before the 1991 campaign—Americans still don’t have much of a clue of why we went there, how we fight there, what the costs and casualties are, and what has really been accomplished.
March 5, 2010
SAN FRANCISCO–Homeland Security and the National Security Agency may be taking a closer look at Internet communications in the future.
The Department of Homeland Security’s top cybersecurity official told CNET on Wednesday that the department may eventually extend its Einstein technology, which is designed to detect and prevent electronic attacks, to networks operated by the private sector. The technology was created for federal networks.
Greg Schaffer, assistant secretary for cybersecurity and communications, said in an interview that the department is evaluating whether Einstein “makes sense for expansion to critical infrastructure spaces” over time.
Not much is known about how Einstein works, and the House Intelligence Committee once charged that descriptions were overly “vague” because of “excessive classification.” The White House did confirm this week that the latest version, called Einstein 3, involves attempting to thwart in-progress cyberattacks by sharing information with the National Security Agency.
Judicial Watch, the public interest group that investigates and prosecutes government corruption, today released its 2009 list of Washington’s “Ten Most Wanted Corrupt Politicians.” The list, in alphabetical order, includes:
- Senator Christopher Dodd (D-CT): This marks two years in a row for Senator Dodd, who made the 2008 “Ten Most Corrupt” list for his corrupt relationship with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and for accepting preferential treatment and loan terms from Countrywide Financial, a scandal which still dogs him. In 2009, the scandals kept coming for the Connecticut Democrat. In 2009, Judicial Watch filed a Senate ethics complaint against Dodd for undervaluing a property he owns in Ireland on his Senate Financial Disclosure forms. Judicial Watch’s complaint forced Dodd to amend the forms. However, press reports suggest the property to this day remains undervalued. Judicial Watch also alleges in the complaint that Dodd obtained a sweetheart deal for the property in exchange for his assistance in obtaining a presidential pardon (during the Clinton administration) and other favors for a long-time friend and business associate. The false financial disclosure forms were part of the cover-up. Dodd remains the head the Senate Banking Committee.
- Senator John Ensign (R-NV): A number of scandals popped up in 2009 involving public officials who conducted illicit affairs, and then attempted to cover them up with hush payments and favors, an obvious abuse of power. The year’s worst offender might just be Nevada Republican Senator John Ensign. Ensign admitted in June to an extramarital affair with the wife of one of his staff members, who then allegedly obtained special favors from the Nevada Republican in exchange for his silence. According to The New York Times: “The Justice Department and the Senate Ethics Committee are expected to conduct preliminary inquiries into whether Senator John Ensign violated federal law or ethics rules as part of an effort to conceal an affair with the wife of an aide…” The former staffer, Douglas Hampton, began to lobby Mr. Ensign’s office immediately upon leaving his congressional job, despite the fact that he was subject to a one-year lobbying ban. Ensign seems to have ignored the law and allowed Hampton lobbying access to his office as a payment for his silence about the affair. (These are potentially criminal offenses.) It looks as if Ensign misused his public office (and taxpayer resources) to cover up his sexual shenanigans.
Hat tip: The New American
by Thomas R. Eddlem
February 26, 2010
An alternative budget proposal submitted by Congressman Paul Ryan (Wis.), the House Budget Committee’s Republican ranking member, would increase the federal budget deficit even more than President Obama’s bloated budget — nearly $1 trillion more — according to a February 24 analysis by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO).
Ryan’s “alternative policy scenario” would make no serious spending cuts, but it would institute three new tax cuts. CBO Director Douglas Elmendorf explained to Ryan that “the three changes to the tax policy assumptions are estimated to increase deficits relative to the baseline projections by $9 billion in 2010 and $3.4 trillion over the 2011-2020 period, mostly from lower revenues but also from increased outlays for refundable tax credits.”
“CBO estimates that, under the alternative scenario you specified, the deficit would amount to $1.2 trillion in 2020, about $500 billion more than the shortfall projected under baseline assumptions.”
Overall, the Republican budget alternative would increase the federal budget deficit by $9.4 trillion over the next 10 years, while President Obama’s fiscal 2011 budget would increase the deficit by $8.5 trillion over the same period of time.
by Ron Gaudio
Jan 20th, 2010
Davy Crockett (1786-1836), was an American legend, remembered especially for his bravery in the battle of the Alamo. But there was a far more significant battle that he fought to preserve the liberties of American citizens, back in the time when politicians took the Constitution seriously.
One day, when Davy Crockett was serving in the House of Representatives, a bill came up to appropriate money for the benefit of a widow of a distinguished naval officer. As usual in Congress, flowery speeches were made, not so much to convince the House, since most felt that it would pass easily, but to afford the opportunity to connect ones name with the popular bill. Before the Speaker called for the vote, Representative Crockett arose and what he said surprised his colleagues:
“Mr. Speaker — I have as much respect for the memory of the deceased, and as much sympathy for the sufferings of the living, if suffering there be, as any man in this House, but we must not permit our respect for the dead or our sympathy for a part of the living to lead us into an act of injustice to the balance of the living. I will not go into an argument to prove that Congress has no power to appropriate this money as an act of charity. Every member upon this floor knows it. We have the right, as individuals, to give away as much of our own money as we please in charity; but as members of Congress we have no right so to appropriate a dollar of the public money. Some eloquent appeals have been made to us upon the ground that it is a debt due the deceased. Mr. Speaker, the deceased lived long after the close of the war; he was in office to the day of his death, and I have never heard that the government was in arrears to him. This government can owe no debts but for services rendered, and at a stipulated price. If it is a debt, how much is it? Has it been audited, and the amount due ascertained? If it is a debt, this is not the place to present it for payment, or to have its merits examined. If it is a debt, we owe more than we can ever hope to pay, for we owe the widow of every soldier who fought in the War of 1812 precisely the same amount. There is a woman in my neighborhood, the widow of as gallant a man as ever shouldered a musket. He fell in battle. She is as good in every respect as this lady, and is as poor. She is earning her daily bread by her daily labor; but if I were to introduce a bill to appropriate five or ten thousand dollars for her benefit, I should be laughed at, and my bill would not get five votes in this House. There are thousands of widows in the country just such as the one I have spoken of, but we never hear of any of these large debts to them. Sir, this is no debt. The government did not owe it to the deceased when he was alive; it could not contract it after he died. I do not wish to be rude, but I must be plain. Every man in this House knows it is not a debt. We cannot, without the grossest corruption, appropriate this money as the payment of a debt. We have not the semblance of authority to appropriate it as a charity. Mr. Speaker, I have said we have the right to give as much of our own money as we please. I am the poorest man on this floor. I cannot vote for this bill, but I will give one week’s pay to the object, and if every member of Congress will do the same, it will amount to more than the bill asks.”