RIP Civil Discourse

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Brett Kavanaugh has been confirmed as the next associate Supreme Court Justice. And, in an extreme twist of irony, the Democratic Party, who so vehemently opposed his confirmation, helped put him there.

Let me explain.

The circus surrounding this whole Brett Kavanaugh issue, including the sexual assault accusations, has prevented any discussion of the real reasons why Kavanaugh should not be on the Supreme Court. A woman bringing up an incident that allegedly happened almost 40 years ago is what made him unfit for the bench to most people who opposed him, NOT the fact that he was instrumental in helping to draft the PATRIOT Act, one of the most unconstitutional pieces of legislation to ever make it out of Congress, if not the most unconstitutional. Not the fact that as an appellate judge, he upheld parts of the PATRIOT Act and has been quoted as saying that the 4th and 5th Amendments basically do not count in the war on terrorism.  If you’ve been paying attention at all since the PATRIOT Act was passed, then you should know that it decimates the 4th and 5th Amendments to the Constitution which protects citizens’ rights to privacy and due process. Kavanaugh has been quoted showing his support for the Act, something a sitting judge should never express. He has said that the government metadata collection is “entirely consistent with the 4th Amendment” and “critical national security need outweighs the impact on privacy occasioned by this program.”

Since the accusations that Kavanaugh groped a woman at a high school party, people have come out of obscurity with additional stories of atrocities that Kavanaugh allegedly committed in his wild youth. The resurgence of the #MeToo movement led to additional hashtag movements like #WhyIDidntReport and #BelieveWomen. People make excuses for Kavanaugh using the “boys will be boys” and “he was drunk” arguments while others scream that women should be believed and men are guilty until proven innocent. I actually saw one of my Facebook friends this morning say “God is good! Kavanaugh has been confirmed!”

Ugh.

I saw a video of a wackjob liberal (Wait, is that redundant?) (Kidding. I know all liberals are not wackjobs.) roundhouse kick a woman who was arguing with him about his beliefs. She did not touch him; she did not accost him in any way. She simply questioned his beliefs and he kicked her. I actually saw people supporting the man for what he did and saw people say that more people need to be kicked in the face.

For disagreeing with them. For not automatically believing a woman’s accusation over something that happened almost 40 years ago. For being anything other than a stark raving mad (insert favorite party affiliation here).

civilized-discourse

Basically, as a woman, I could not care less about Kavanaugh’s wild past. I could not care less who he groped, or who he showed his penis to, or who he threw ice at in a bar. As an American citizen, however, I do care that he has upheld the PATRIOT Act and that basically, he is the team player that the Trump administration desperately wanted on the Supreme Court. The sexual misconduct allegations that were allowed to play out in Congressional hearings, prevented the true reasons why Kavanaugh is not worthy of sitting on the Supreme Court. The great divide that is present in this country was only widened by the spectacle that was the Kavanaugh hearings, and intelligent, rational people are even more afraid to speak their minds than ever before.

So, because civil discourse is dead, and because no one in the Congress actually cares about the Constitution, we now have one of the authors and a major supporter of the fucking PATRIOT Act on the fucking Supreme Court. An author of the Act, and a supporter of the Act. On the Supreme Court.

Good job, America.

Good job.

The Case, Re-visited

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Twenty-two years ago, economist, revisionist historian, and libertarian icon Murray Rothbard published “The Case Against The Fed”. It is a short book; only 168 pages, but its weight is exponentially greater than its page count. I won’t lie to you: it’s not an easy read. Despite that, I urge everyone to take the time and effort to work your way through it. The book has been made available in electronic formats, free of charge, by The Mises Institute. You can find it here: https://mises.org/library/case-against-fed-0.

In those pages, Rothbard explains, as simply as he possibly can, an extremely intricate conspiracy that is at the very root – in fact, I firmly believe that it is the root – of virtually all the issues wrong with our nation and its government for the past century and today. In the closing pages, he also laid out a simple plan to defeat the conspiracy.

It truly is a simple plan. And implementing Rothbard’s plan truly would be, in my opinion, the absolute best thing to happen to our nation. Unfortunately, it’s not an easy plan, or a painless one. In fact, I honestly don’t believe it will ever be implemented – at least, not peacefully.

Nonetheless, I thought it might be entertaining (in a macabre sort of way) and enlightening (in a depressing sort of way) to update Rothbard’s figures from 22 years ago. I leave it to you to draw your own conclusions about how the numbers from then and from now compare and contrast.

First, a simple ledger gleaned from the Fed’s own published “balance sheets”:

chart

(*1) 1994 figures taken from the text of “The Case Against The Fed”, Copyright 2007 by the Ludwig von Mises Institute.
(*2) 2016 figures from: https://www.federalreserve.gov/econresdata/releases/intlsumm/current.htm
(*3) Does not include $8B of “Earmarked Gold”, “Held in foreign and international accounts…”. “Gold stock is valued at $42.22 per fine troy ounce.”
(*4) “SDRs” acronym for “Special Drawing Rights”; another boondoogle involving the IMF.
(*5) Other Fed Assets include loans to banks, physical assets such as bank buildings, real property, etc. I have been, so far, unsuccessful in finding an updated figure for this category; for the sake of argument I have carried it forward, unchanged.

Now, the bare bones of Rothbard’s plan:

End the Fed.

Yes, end it. Abolish it. Do away with it. Eliminate it. As Rothbard says: “The Federal Reserve is officially a “corporation,” and the way to abolish it is the way any corporation, certainly any inherently insolvent corporation such as the Fed, is abolished. Any corporation is eliminated by liquidating its assets and parceling them out pro rata to the corporation’s creditors.”

We, you and I, the American people, are the Federal Reserve Corporation’s creditors. We are the ones who have been fleeced, coerced, taxed, and blatantly robbed to prop it up. We should, we need to, we MUST revoke its charter and destroy the means that it affords “our” government to continue all the follies and downright evils they commit.

Simply put, we should seize the gold and “real” assets of the Federal Reserve and cancel – repudiate – everything else on their balance sheets. The gold is the only real thing the Federal Reserve has, and since they stole it from us to begin with, we should reclaim it. Almost all of the other assets are nothing but accounting fictions; the left hand “loaning” empty air to the right hand. Erase them.

The Fed’s balance sheet shows $11B in gold inventory. Notice that that number has not changed in at least 22 years. The gold is, tellingly, also valued at a mere $42.22 per ounce – unchanged since February 12, 1973, when then-President Nixon officially moved the United States to a totally fiat currency. $11B at $42.22 per ounce translates to a little over 260 million ounces of gold in the Fed’s vaults (we hope).Today’s -Nov 4th, 2016- spot price for gold bullion is $1302.30 per ounce. IF (a very big “if”) the Fed actually has that gold in its New York vaults, a little simple math tells us that its worth in today’s dollars is not $11 billion, but northwards of $339B!

Unfortunately, $339B, while a not-insubstantial amount, isn’t nearly enough to fuel a thriving free market economy, especially considering that, by their own admission, there is something on the order of $1.5T (yes, trillion) worth of Federal Reserve currency in circulation today.

We have to revalue. We have to distribute that 260 million ounces of gold so that everyone holding Federal Reserve Notes gets their fair share – a pro rata distribution of assets to the creditors of a failed business, as is done every day in this and other countries. So we divide the outstanding debt – 1,500,000,000,000 dollar bills – by the available asset – 260,000,000 ounces of gold – and get a new, pro-rated value: $5,769.23 per ounce. And that means that every one-dollar Federal Reserve Note is then worth 1/5,769.23rd of an ounce of gold, and can be exchanged for crisp new U.S. dollar bills backed by that weight of gold, or for the gold itself, if you insist.

Think about the ramifications. There will be some short-lived panics. The stock market will reel for months as it adjusts to the new reality. Fortunes will be lost, and made. Many businesses will crumble. Credit will be very, very tight until the dust settles. Prices for virtually everything will be a roller-coaster ride until the market finds its new balance.

And our endless wars will stop, almost overnight. The military-industrial complex will be destroyed. Congress will no longer be able to spend money we don’t have on programs we can’t afford. Foreign nations that have been suckling at our teat these many decades will howl when the IMF goes bankrupt and they are forced to fend for themselves for a change. And, most importantly of all, inflation – that invisible thief of our children’s future – will instantly vanish.

End the Fed. Consider it major surgery to save the patient’s life, to remove a deadly cancer. It’s past time. The cancer is almost, is very, very close to being, too far advanced. Remove it, now.

KUDZU

liberty kudzu

As trite as it may sound, the Tree of Liberty truly is being choked to death by kudzu.

*Kudzu: AKA “A-Z Index of U.S. Government Departments and Agencies”;

usa.gov/federal-agencies/a

AbilityOne Commission, Access Board, Administration for Children and Families (ACF), Administration for Community Living, Administration for Native Americans, Administration on Aging (AoA), Administration on Developmental Disabilities, Administrative Conference of the United States, Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, African Development Foundation, Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), Agency for International Development (USAID), Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, Agricultural Marketing Service, Agricultural Research Service, Agriculture Department (USDA), AmeriCorps, American Battle Monuments Commission, Amtrak (AMTRAK), Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Antitrust Division, Architect of the Capitol, Archives (National Archives and Records Administration) (NARA), Arctic Research Commission, Armed Forces Retirement Home, Arms Control and International Security, Army Corps of Engineers, Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Interagency Coordinating Committee, Bankruptcy Courts, Barry M. Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Program, Bonneville Power Administration, Botanic Garden, Broadcasting Board of Governors, Bureau of Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, Bureau of Consular Affairs, Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), Bureau of Engraving and Printing (BEP), Bureau of Indian Affairs, Bureau of Industry and Security, Bureau of International Labor Affairs, Bureau of Justice Statistics, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), Bureau of Prisons, Bureau of Reclamation, Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE), Bureau of Transportation Statistics, Bureau of the Census, Bureau of the Fiscal Service, Bureau of the Public Debt, Capitol Police, Capitol Visitor Center, Census Bureau, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board, Chief Acquisition Officers Council, Chief Financial Officers Council, Chief Human Capital Officers Council, Chief Information Officers Council, Citizens’ Stamp Advisory Committee, Citizenship and Immigration Services, Coast Guard, Commerce Department (DOC), Commission of Fine Arts, Commission on Civil Rights, Commission on International Religious Freedom, Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (Helsinki Commission), Committee for the Implementation of Textile Agreements, Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), Community Planning and Development, Computer Emergency Readiness Team (US CERT), Congress—U.S. House of Representatives, Congress—U.S. Senate, Congressional Budget Office (CBO), Congressional Research Service, Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Copyright Office, Corps of Engineers, Council of Economic Advisers, Council of the Inspectors General on Integrity and Efficiency, Council on Environmental Quality, Court Services and Offender Supervision Agency for the District of Columbia, Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces, Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, Court of Federal Claims, Court of International Trade, Customs and Border Protection, Defense Acquisition University, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), Defense Commissary Agency, Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA), Defense Contract Management Agency, Defense Field Activities, Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS), Defense Finance and Accounting Service, Out-of-Service Debt Management Center, Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA), Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), Defense Legal Services Agency, Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), Defense Security Service (DSS), Defense Technical Information Center, Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA), Delaware River Basin Commission, Denali Commission, Department of Agriculture (USDA), Department of Commerce (DOC), Department of Defense, Department of Education (ED), Department of Energy (DOE), Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Department of Justice (DOJ), Department of Labor (DOL), Department of State (DOS), Department of Transportation (DOT), Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Department of the Interior (DOI), Department of the Treasury, Office of Director of National Intelligence, District of Columbia, Domestic Policy Council, Drug Enforcement Administration, Dwight D. Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy, Economic Adjustment Office, Economic Development Administration (EDA), Economic Research Service, Economic, Business and Agricultural Affairs, Economics and Statistics Administration, Education Resources Information Center (ERIC), Election Assistance Commission (EAC), Elementary and Secondary Education, Office of (OESE), Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA), Employment and Training Administration, Endangered Species Program, Energy Information Administration, English Language Acquisition Office, Engraving and Printing, Bureau of (BEP), Environmental Management (Energy Department), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), European Command, Executive Office for Immigration Review, Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity (FHEO), Farm Credit Administration, Farm Credit System Insurance Corporation, Farm Service Agency, Federal Accounting Standards Advisory Board, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Federal Bureau of Prisons, Federal Citizen Information Center, Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Federal Consulting Group, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), Federal Election Commission, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Federal Executive Boards, Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council, Federal Financing Bank, Federal Geographic Data Committee, Federal Highway Administration, Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac), Federal Housing Administration (FHA), Federal Housing Finance Agency, Federal Interagency Committee for the Management of Noxious and Exotic Weeds, Federal Interagency Committee on Education, Federal Interagency Council on Statistical Policy, Federal Judicial Center, Federal Labor Relations Authority, Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer, Federal Law Enforcement Training Center, Federal Library and Information Center Committee, Federal Maritime Commission, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, Federal Mine Safety and Health Review Commission, Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae), Federal Protective Service, Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), Federal Register, Federal Reserve System, Federal Retirement Thrift Investment Board, Federal Student Aid Information Center, Federal Trade Commission (FTC), Federal Transit Administration (FTA), Federal Voting Assistance Program, Federated States of Micronesia, Financial Management Service, Fiscal Responsibility and Reform Commission, Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), Food Safety and Inspection Service, Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Foreign Agricultural Service, Foreign Claims Settlement Commission, Forest Service, Fossil Energy, Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, General Services Administration (GSA), Geological Survey (USGS), Global Affairs (State Department), Government Accountability Office (GAO), Government National Mortgage Association (Ginnie Mae), Government Publishing Office, Grain Inspection, Packers and Stockyards Administration, Harry S. Truman Scholarship Foundation, Health Resources and Services Administration, Health and Human Services Department (HHS), Healthy Homes and Lead Hazard Control Office, Helsinki Commission, Holocaust Memorial Museum, Homeland Security Department (DHS), House Office of Inspector General, House Office of the Clerk, House of Representatives, Housing Office, Immigration and Citizenship Services, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Indian Affairs, Indian Arts and Crafts Board, Indian Health Service, Industrial College of the Armed Forces, Information Resource Management College, Information Resources Center (ERIC), Innovation and Improvement Office, Inspectors General, Institute of Education Sciences, Institute of Museum and Library Services, Institute of Peace, Inter-American Foundation, Interagency Alternative Dispute Resolution Working Group, Interagency Council on Homelessness, Interior Department (DOI), Internal Revenue Service (IRS), International Trade Administration (ITA), International Trade Commission, Interpol, James Madison Memorial Fellowship Foundation, Japan-United States Friendship Commission, Job Corps, John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Joint Board for the Enrollment of Actuaries, Joint Chiefs of Staff, Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies, Joint Fire Science Program, Joint Forces Command, Joint Forces Staff College, Joint Military Intelligence College, Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical and Biological Defense, Judicial Circuit Courts of Appeal, Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation, Justice Department (DOJ), Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Labor Department (DOL), Legal Services Corporation, Library of Congress (LOC), Marine Mammal Commission, Maritime Administration (MARAD), Marketing and Regulatory Programs (Agriculture Department), Marshals Service, Mediation and Conciliation Service, Medicaid (CMS), Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission, Medicare (CMS), Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, Merit Systems Protection Board, Migratory Bird Conservation Commission, Military Postal Service Agency, Millennium Challenge Corporation, Mine Safety and Health Administration, Minor Outlying Islands, Minority Business Development Agency, Mint, Missile Defense Agency (MDA), Mississippi River Commission, Morris K. Udall and Stewart L. Udall Foundation, Multifamily Housing Office, NOAA Fisheries, National AIDS Policy Office, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), National Agricultural Statistics Service, National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), National Bipartisan Commission on the Future of Medicare, National Cancer Institute (NCI), National Capital Planning Commission, National Cemetery Administration, National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, National Constitution Center, National Council on Disability (NCD), National Credit Union Administration, National Defense University, National Defense University iCollege, National Drug Intelligence Center, National Economic Council, National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), National Gallery of Art, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, National Guard, National Health Information Center (NHIC), National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, National Indian Gaming Commission, National Institute of Corrections, National Institute of Food and Agriculture, National Institute of Justice, National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Intelligence University, National Interagency Fire Center, National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), National Laboratories (Energy Department), National Marine Fisheries Service, National Mediation Board, National Nuclear Security Administration, National Ocean Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), National Park Foundation, National Park Service, National Passport Information Center (NPIC), National Railroad Passenger Corporation (AMTRAK), National Reconnaissance Office, National Science Foundation (NSF), National Security Agency (NSA), National Security Council, National Technical Information Service, National Telecommunications and Information Administration, National Transportation Safety Board, National War College, National Weather Service (NOAA), Natural Resources Conservation Service, Northern Command, Northwest Power Planning Council, Northwest Power and Conservation Council, Nuclear Energy, Science and Technology, Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission, Ocean Energy Management, Bureau of (BOEM), Office for Civil Rights – Department of Education, Office of Community Planning and Development, Office of Compliance, Office of Disability Employment Policy, Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE), Office of Fossil Energy, Office of Government Ethics, Office of Housing, Office of Justice Programs, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Office of Management and Budget (OMB), Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP), Office of Natural Resources Revenue, Office of Nuclear Energy (Department of Energy), Office of Personnel Management (OPM), Office of Refugee Resettlement, Office of Science and Technology Policy, Office of Scientific and Technical Information, Office of Servicemember Affairs, Office of Special Counsel, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitative Services (OSERS), Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), Office of the Director of National Intelligence, Office of the Federal Register, Office of the Pardon Attorney, Open World Leadership Center, Out-of-Service Debt Management Center, Overseas Private Investment Corporation, Pacific Command, Pacific Northwest Electric Power and Conservation Planning Council, Palau, Pardon Attorney, Office of, Parole Commission (Justice Department), Peace Corps, Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC), Pentagon Force Protection Agency, Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, Policy Development and Research (HUD), Political Affairs (State Department), Postal Regulatory Commission, Postal Service (USPS), Power Administrations, President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition, Presidio Trust, Prisoner of War/Missing Personnel Office, Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB), Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs (State Department), Public and Indian Housing, Radio Free Asia (RFA), Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL), Radio and TV Marti, Railroad Retirement Board (RRB), Regulatory Information Service Center, Rehabilitation Services Administration (Education Department), Republic of The Marshall Islands, Research and Innovative Technology Administration, Risk Management Agency (Agriculture Department), Rural Business and Cooperative Programs, Rural Development, Rural Housing Service, Rural Utilities Service, Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation, Science Office (Energy Department), Secret Service, Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Selective Service System (SSS), Senate, Small Business Administration (SBA), Smithsonian Institution, Social Security Administration (SSA), Social Security Advisory Board, Southeastern Power Administration, Southern Command, Southwestern Power Administration, Special Forces Operations Command, State Department (DOS), State Justice Institute, Stennis Center for Public Service, Strategic Command ,Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Supreme Court of the United States, Surface Mining, Reclamation and Enforcement, Surface Transportation Board, Susquehanna River Basin Commission, TRICARE Management, Tax Court, Taxpayer Advocacy Panel, Tennessee Valley Authority, Trade and Development Agency, Transportation Command, Transportation Department (DOT), Transportation Security Administration (TSA), Transportation Statistics, Bureau of, Treasury Department, Trustee Program, U.S. AbilityOne Commission, U.S. Access Board, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), U.S. Air Force, U.S. Air Force Reserve Command, U.S. Arctic Research Commission, U.S. Army, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, U.S. Botanic Garden, U.S. Capitol Police, U.S. Capitol Visitor Center, U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM), U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Commission of Fine Arts, U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), U.S. Department of Commerce (DOC), U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), U.S. Department of the Treasury, U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC), U.S. Fleet Forces Command, U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, U.S. International Trade Commission, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. Military Academy, West Point, U.S. Mission to the United Nations, U.S. National Central Bureau – Interpol, U.S. Navy, U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, U.S. Postal Service (USPS), U.S. Senate, U.S. Sentencing Commission, U.S. Trade Representative, U.S. Trade and Development Agency, U.S. Trustee Program, US-CERT (US CERT), USAGov, Unified Combatant Commands (Defense Department), Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, United States Mint, United States Postal Inspection Service, Veterans Affairs Department (VA), Veterans Benefits Administration, Veterans Day National Committee, Veterans Health Administration (VHA), Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (VETS), Vietnam Education Foundation, Voice of America, Washington Headquarters Services, Weather Service (NOAA), Weights and Measures Division, Western Area Power Administration, White House, White House Commission on Presidential Scholars, White House Office of Administration, Women’s Bureau (Labor Department), Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars

We Interrupt this Republic

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We interrupt this republic to bring you…. uh…. we have no idea. We have no idea what to say anymore. It’s been a long time since we did a blog post. To be quite honest, we are so disgusted with what is going on in our country these days, that to even put our disgust into words would make the saltiest sailor blush and believe me, that’s saying something.

There are times when we are so dumbfounded at something that has happened that the plethora of obscenities that spring forth cannot even begin to explain how…well…dumbfounded we are. See? We can’t even explain it properly.

What the hell? To put it mildly. Shenanigans. Just plain shenanigans.

Let me give you a few examples.

Donald Trump.

Do I even need to say anymore?

How in the hell (and again, that’s putting it mildly) can Donald Trump be so high up in the polls? He’s filed for bankruptcy how many times? And he wants us to put him in charge of the country? But what is bothering us the most? There are people willing to vote for him???

Hillary Clinton is a criminal. She has broken the law more times than anyone cares to count, yet there are still people who will vote for her. What??

And Bernie Sanders. He wants to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour. He wants to make all tuition free at all public colleges and universities. He wants every American on a single-payer health plan. He’s a whack job. And he has no business being president.

We could go on. We could say something about every one of the candidates running for the White House. Not a single one of them is presidential material. Not a single one. And frankly, it scares the hell out of us. Even Carli Fiorina says she would be fine with a Muslim president. How on earth could someone, whose job would be to uphold and protect the Constitution of the United States, not have a problem with someone being elected president whose religious tenets go against the very fiber of that same document?

Congress is a joke. Why are they even in Washington? Corporations are writing legislation. The elected officials might as well just bring their asses right on back home. They are only there to pad their pockets.

The Supreme Court. Holy hell. Where do we even begin? The last bastion of our Constitutional rights and they have gone off their benches. Completely. Totally.

Our president has given Iran a get out of nuclear jail free card that they can use anytime they want and flown the middle finger at Israel in the process. He and Congress have signed willy nilly various and sundry legislations that 99.999% of them didn’t even freaking read, let alone understand. Did you know that every time they sign another bill, they take away another right? Are you paying attention? Are you?

We have an elected official who is refusing to do her job because it goes against her religious beliefs. And people are cheering her on. People actually believe that it’s okay for an elected official to refuse to issue a marriage license to someone because it goes against her religion. What if her religion said it was wrong for a man and woman to marry? It’s a stretch, I know. Work with me here. What if her religion said it was wrong for a white woman and a black man to marry? What if she decided to follow all of the rules in the Bible and deny adulterers a marriage license? Would it be okay then for her to refuse to do her job that she was elected to do?

What if a teacher said it was against her religion to teach Common Core? Would she get fired? Or would people all over the country stand behind her and play “Eye of the Tiger” for her when she got released from jail?

We are disgusted, I tell you. We don’t even know where to go from here. We can’t even break 100 followers on our Facebook page. Apparently we aren’t funny like the hundreds of viral videos floating around these days. Or cute like the bulldog puppy barking at the slipper or whatever. There is a FB page dedicated to everything skulls. They have over 100,000 followers. Sigh.

You let us know what you think we should do. Because we are at a loss for words. And believe me when I tell you, that is saying something.

Does the Constitution Need Work?

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If James Madison knew then what we know now, how do you think he would have changed the Constitution?

Is there something he would have put in?

Something he would have left out?

Would there have been more defined limits on executive powers?

More clearly defined limits on what the central government can and can’t do?

Term limits for Congress?

More language about how Congress is responsible for guarding the currency?

How about an article spelling out the procedure for a State to peacefully secede from the union?

Tell us what you think Madison should have done when he wrote the Constitution.

2A or not 2A, That is the Question

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I get it. Some people are scared of guns. Not anyone I know, but some people. I have been around guns my entire life. My father has had a shotgun, loaded, leaned against a corner in my parent’s bedroom for as long as I can remember.

Gasp! With children in the house?

Yes, with children in the house.

Children who were taught at a very early age that guns were not toys, Children who were taught at a very early age to do what they were told, and we were told not to touch the guns without permission. Ever. Children who were taught at a very early age how to shoot, and how to do it properly. Children who were taught, by a patient and caring father, to have a healthy respect for guns, but to not be afraid of them.

But, I understand that not everyone was as lucky as we were. I understand that not everyone feels comfortable with a loaded .40 caliber pistol on the bedside table. I get it. To each his own. If you don’t want to own a gun, don’t own one. See? Wasn’t I nice? Why can’t you scaredy cat ninnies who want to outlaw all guns be nice to me?

Sigh. I’m sorry. That was uncalled for. It isn’t your fault that you live in an area that has strict gun laws and you can’t own one. What’s that you say? That’s not the reason? Okay, well, it isn’t your fault your parents were tree-hugging hippies making love, not war and sticking flowers in the end of rifle barrels. What? That’s not the reason either? Okay, I give. What is the reason that you refuse to exercise your right to protect yourself and your family?

Guns kill people.

Hold it right there. Just hold it. Right. There.

People kill people. It wouldn’t matter if there wasn’t a gun available in the universe; if they wanted you dead, you’d be dead. Are you going to outlaw every single sharp object in the world? Every knife? Every ax? Lizzie Borden didn’t have any trouble. No one else will either. Don’t you get it? It isn’t the guns who kill people. Take a look at this graphic from the FBI on weapons used in murders from 2008 to 2012.

Screen-Shot-2014-05-23-at-8.12.55-AM

According to their stats, there were 8,755 murders committed from 2008 to 2012 by people using knives or other cutting instruments. There were also 2,795 murders committed by people wielding clubs, or hammers, or baseball bats. And my personal favorite, those personal weapons, hands, fists, feet and the like were used to murder 3,890 people.

I can hear you now. But there have been 36,163 people murdered by guns. Well, again, they weren’t murdered by guns. They were murdered by someone using a gun. It could have been a rifle, a shotgun, a handgun or an antique muzzle loader. But the problem still IS NOT THE GUNS. The problem is people’s value of human life, but that’s for another blog post.

My point for bringing these stats to your attention was not to hurt my case. It was to prove that if there were no guns, people would still find a way to kill one another. But let’s look at another statistic shall we? Below is a listing of all firearms manufactured, imported and sold in the U.S. in the same years as the FBI stats on murders.

Fig-1-2008-2012-detail

Do you see what I see? From 2008 to 2012, there were almost 48,000,000 firearms manufactured, imported and sold in the U.S. Yet, only 36,000 of those weapons were used to murder someone. Do you know what that means? That means you have less than one one-thousandths of one percent of being murdered by a firearm. That means that one out of 750,000 firearms were used in murders. And that’s only counting the firearms sold in the U.S. during that one five year period. it is estimated that there are 270-310 million firearms in the hands of U.S. civilians. So, out of all those millions of guns, only 36,000 murders were committed in a five year period. I can’t do the math on that one. The percentage is so astronomically small that the Windows calculator can’t display it as a number. And I’m not a mathematician. But you get the idea.

Now, before you yell at me for saying there were “only 36,000 murders” and lives matter, hang on. Yes, I know, any murder is senseless and completely horrible. And people who call for more gun control because of 36,000 murders using firearms believe they have a leg to stand on. But, did you know that in that same five year period there were 170,566 deaths from car accidents? So why don’t cars kill people? Why aren’t you yelling at the top of your lungs to ban all vehicles? Ah, I see. You aren’t afraid of your car.

Now, just imagine for one second, how many murders there would have been if there weren’t firearms in the hands of law abiding citizens, who would only use a weapon on another person as a last resort to protect themselves? How many? What stops a bad man with a gun? A good man with one.

And while we are talking, let’s talk about the intent behind the 2nd Amendment. That government you keep calling on? The one you keep screaming at to outlaw this and outlaw that? The Founding Fathers put the 2nd Amendment in the Bill of Rights to protect you FROM THEM. 

Oh, sure. People claim they need their guns to hunt to feed their families. They claim they need their guns to protect themselves, their families and their belongings from intruders. But that is only the icing on the Founders’ cake. The cake itself was baked for the sole purpose of protecting you from a tyrannical government. Period. End of story.

So, while you whine to said government to protect you from anything and everything because you are unable or too afraid to do it yourself, you leave my guns alone.