Voting. Do You Feel Empowered? I Feel More Hopeless than Usual.

Ah the ceremonial handing off of the whip. Every two years all us slaves get to choose a new master, or decide to keep the old one. And we all talk about how much change is needed on the plantation, and how my preferred slave master will change it for the better.

Two years and 540 posts, and I only feel I have accelerated the inevitable exasperated disenfranchisement I feel with our political system. And all the “freedom loving” Americans are thrilled the GOP might retake the Senate. And then… repeal Obamacare? Reduce the debt? Give power back to the states? Lower taxes? Reign in the corrupt police state? Get us out of world police duty? Look into the Federal Reserve? Get rid of the IRS? Repeal the NDAA? Cut the DHS?

Yeah, maybe! LOL. I know, Obama can still veto. But the last time we had a Republican House, Republican Senate, and Republican President, we got the Patriot Act, the TSA, the Department of Homeland Security, increased spending and debt, and bought enough military equipment for the US Military, ISIS, Al-qaeda, Syria, Egypt, Libya, and local police departments to all share.

To Vote or Not to Vote, That is the Question

So I am torn. Do I vote for the slave master who promises to shorten the fence, and make it easier to escape? Or do I refrain from voting, to show the slave masters that I do not sanction their force? The former may not even happen if I do vote: “Oh sorry, I tried to get the fence shortened, but half you slaves voted for that higher fence master, oh well, maybe next time if you vote for my friends”. But the latter could land me with an even higher fence, longer work hours, more lashings etcetera etcetera.

This is a debate anarcho-leaners have amongst themselves. Is it better to vote and hopefully change things for the better, or is it better to show you don’t approve of the system by not voting? It is indeed unlikely that anything will change for the better, and even if it does change, it may only prolong our slavery. Part of me thinks I should vote for my least favorite candidates just to hasten the process!

I’ve already decided, I will be voting this year. I don’t have enough time to fully debate this in my head in order to arrive at the best answer. Bill Buppert would say I am sanctioning my masters, and George Carlin would agree:

I firmly believe that if you vote, you have no right to complain. Now, some people like to twist that around. They say, ‘If you don’t vote, you have no right to complain,’ but where’s the logic in that? If you vote, and you elect dishonest, incompetent politicians, and they get into office and screw everything up, you are responsible for what they have done. You voted them in. You caused the problem. You have no right to complain. I, on the other hand, who did not vote — who did not even leave the house on Election Day — am in no way responsible for what these politicians have done and have every right to complain about the mess that you created.

And honestly, it’s hard to argue with that. If you don’t vote, everything that happens is simply being done to you. It is the ultimate injustice. You have sanctioned no masters, you have agreed to no contract, yet people will bust down your door and take your money, maybe kill you, perhaps block you from pursuing happiness, but will certainly tell you what you can and cannot do, regardless of if you have wronged anyone. And by extension, you have done that to people if the politician you voted for puts that into action.

Of course this would all be solved if there was a “none of the above” option, or “middle finger” option on the ballot as I so eloquently worded it on Facebook. Then I would be happy to go down to the polls and tell them all, “I choose no master”. That is what I pathetically attempt to do with my vote. Vote for the guys who will reduce government. But that also begs the question, is there anyone who will really reduce government in my life?

I have this fantasy that someday anarchists will be running for office, and they will repeal, repeal, repeal until there is nothing left of our government, then sell the government property off, and rebate the money to the people from whom it was stolen.

Part of me wants to run for some office as an anarchist. In addition to being quite the laugh, I might get the message out to some people. And imagine the hilarity that would ensue if I actually got elected!

Sorry for the conversational tone and lack of continuity in this post, but this is what election day does to my head. It is like trying to trick me into thinking I could possible do something to attain more freedom today. And it is indeed possible. It is also possible that I win big next time I go to Foxwoods… but we all know the odds are stacked in favor of the house.

In closing, I’m going to borrow from the Facebook group Nobody For President.

Vote Nobody for President, 2016!

Nobody will keep their campaign promises!

Nobody will reduce the debt, stop the wars, and lower taxes!

Nobody puts the voter first!

Nobody really cares about you!

So vote for Nobody this election cycle, because with Nobody in office, we may finally get the change we need!

The Elizabeth Warren Hype Escalates

This past April I wrote an article suggesting we would begin to see Elizabeth Warren touted in the news as a 2016 Democrat Presidential nominee favorite, and viable alternative to Hillary Clinton.

But why bring up this old issue of the insulting statements made by the President and one random Senator? Because this “random Senator” is shaping up to “pull an Obama” in 2016. Remember how you had never heard of Obama, and then all of the sudden the freshman Senator from Illinois was the President? He had not even been a Senator for 4 years when he was elected President, and the media made a bigger deal about the Republican Vice Presidentialcandidate’s short tenure as Governor of Alaska. The 2008 election was not about women, it was about race. And anyway, conservative women are not victims of the “war on women”.

It was all about race. If you didn’t like Obama, well you were just harboring racist feelings. And its not Fast and Furious, or the refusal to prosecute black panthers, or his career as a Wall Street defense attorney, or his investigations of reporters that made you dislike Attorney General Eric Holder, its just because he is black. But that card has been warn out over the past 6 years, and the “war on women” rhetoric has heated up. This strategy is out of the same playbook:make the establishment seem anti-establishment by playing the victim. A vote for Obama was “a vote against racism”. And this time around the Democratic nominee will garner “votes against sexism”. And naturally the pick would be Hillary Clinton; after all she is crazy far ahead in the polls, a strong independent woman, and everyone knows her name.

But there’s a hushed buzz running through the Democratic party and liberal circles that suggests Elizabeth Warren could “pull an Obama”, come out of nowhere and be the next President before we know what hit us. This is what happened with Obama and the media love fest surrounding him, and drowning out any critics. The old cry from the sheep herd of “four legs good, two legs bad” had turned into “four legs good, two legs better” within just a few nights. His lack of experience was not a concern, even though Palin (again the media focus being on the GOP Vice Presidential candidate) had more executive experience than Obama.

Now, 3 months later, when “Elizabeth Warren” is searched on Google news, 8 of the first 10 articles are about a potential run for President in 2016 by the Senator from Massachusetts. It just seems strange to me that Democrats are so eager to pick first term Senators for their Presidential nominees.

My main problem with Warren is her typical politician dishonesty, as well as her outright hatred for the free market, and indeed businesses in general. Her attitude is that government solves problems, government is the only way to grow the economy, and that since people are bad we need to keep them in check with a government made up of people.

I’m not sure “the people” pick the President anymore. The media pretty much take their orders from above, and turn that into public opinion. People think that Warren would reign in Wall Street, but that is absurd! The only reason Wall Street has power is because they are in a crony capitalist relationship with the government. And Warren’s solution is more government regulation! I don’t understand how people could be so naive.

That’s why the only reason I would support a Presidential candidate is if I actually think they would reduce the size of government, and the power government has over our lives. If there is someone who would deescalate the police state, stop nation building, and make the market free by taking subsidies, grants, bailouts, and loans off the table, I would support them. But I am starting to think that might be too much to hope for in this day and age.

Rand Paul is So Crazy, He Wants to Stop Perpetual Warfare

rand-paulSo let’s see, John McCain has some foreign policy criticisms for Rand Paul? Well Rand must be doing something right. Dick Cheney thinks Paul doesn’t understand the true threat of terrorism, adding “You’ve got folks who simply don’t want to be bothered, and it’s been a long time since 9/11,”. If only the electorate was still whipped into a scared frenzy over terrorism, then they would elect the right people.

It’s actually insane to me that Dick Cheney still speaks publicly. Is this some kind of reverse psychology strategy, because the guy must know people think he’s a villain. I just don’t get how people can keep trying the same ridiculous strategy overseas, and then have the nerve to call Rand Paul crazy when he suggests we don’t engage in endless 1984 style wars. This is not a conspiracy, the military industrial complex are welfare recipients, and will do what they have to in order to keep the cash flowing.

But somehow people believe that we need to keep fighting wars in, say, Iraq in order to keep America safe. Even as hundreds or thousands of people pour over the border every day without being checked out, putting our men and women in uniform thousands of miles away to kill terrorists is going to make us safer? How about leaving that stolen and squandered tax money in the hands of the people, because I know how to provide for my security better than my government. At least I’ll be able to choose which company is most effective, and it wouldn’t be the one charging 10x more so that they can bust down Iraqi doors until the cows come home.

It is the same as any other insane government expenditure; first it goes through the corruption machine. We have all these middlemen in DC that cannot possibly add value to our transactions, they can only siphon off wealth. They do it when it comes to providing welfare and a “safety net”, they steal from us when backing green energy, and they use funds taken by force to harass with law enforcement the same people who funded them at gunpoint. A thousand injuries we bear from our government.

The military is no different, it still wastes our wealth and delivers a sub-par product. Then the money spent on building tanks instead of being invested gets aimed at us in the form of a cannon when our local police chief gets his hands on an “urban assault vehicle”, because my friends who value ending slavery are that dangerous to the rulers.

“It’s not isolationism. It’s setting a high bar for sending our sons and daughters overseas,” said Lorne Craner, a foreign policy adviser to Paul…

Trade is not isolationist, yet how do you trade with a country that has been reduced to rubble? Growing economies is what will make the world safer, if everyone’s life is good enough so that they don’t want to murder people they never met. Right now, America is ensuring a steady stream of terrorists for years to come, by giving plenty of little boys and girls a faceless, foreign enemy to grow up hating. The enemy whose boots have literally and figuratively been on their faces for decades.

Craner, however, argued that Paul’s views are more in line with Americans who are growing increasingly distrustful after the experiences of the Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq wars, and want a clearer sense of the objectives of future military actions and how they’re going to end.

And let’s not separate this from other reasons to be distrustful of our government. The same scumbags who are in charge of the IRS, DHS, EPA, FDA, and NSA are in charge of our military. The orders about auditing TEA Partiers are issued by the same person who orders drone strikes on countries we are not at war with.

The same “government will save us” philosophy that allows the EPA to trespass on our property and claim control of our water also says the U.S. can “help” Iraq, or “improve” Syria, or at least that screwing over people overseas will make third parties (us) safer. Sort of like how pro-gun folks are harassed by the government for the sake of the children. But as pro-gunners, we know it doesn’t make our children any safer to outlaw guns. That same attitude needs to be transcribed to everything the government does.

The take away is that Rand Paul can only improve things for the country by advocating a deescalation of force overseas. The example set at home is likewise a deescalation of force, and the fewer tanks the USA builds, the fewer tanks they will end up selling to your local police department who considers you a terrorist. The military has been a third rail for conservatives for a while, but it is time we treat military issues the same as any other statist, big government, safety net, welfare addled, cronyist, corrupt power orgy it is.

Whenever we get the chance to vote with our dollars instead of with politicians, I suggest we take it. If we want to keep more wealth in this nation, then at least Rand Paul is more consistent than many Republicans. Because a tax cut isn’t really a tax cut if we are still spending the money. Set the example for what a small government really looks like militarily, and there’s a good chance the rest will follow. It is not as scary as it sounds. True threats will be solved with a free market, so we cannot advocate monopolizing force militarily, at the same time we seek to combat aggressive force at home from our police, and regulatory agencies. If you have faith in anything, have faith in market solutions—you and me.

EPA Destroys “Due Process”

The Fifth Amendment in the Bill of Rights reads:

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury… nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.

That is pretty clear; doesn’t leave much room for misinterpretation. But somehow the Environmental Protection Agency claims the authority to fine people for breaking their regulations. These are not laws, passed by a legislative body of a state or the country, they are rules made up by an unelected bureaucratic body. The EPA then demands money be paid by individuals for violating these rules: they deprive people of money–property–without those people being indicted by grand jury, and without due process of law.

If this is how the government operates, why have a system of government at all? Why have rules for the government to follow if they can just bypass them with random excuses for why it is “necessary” to ignore the rule of law. And without due process, without legislative process, and without enforcing restraints on government as defined clearly and explicitly in the Constitution, we are left simply in a dictatorship. And I’m not overreacting based on emotion, I am simply calling a spade a spade.

If the laws of the country come from unelected bodies who make  and enforce rules absent legislation, and absent courts, what is that system of governance if not a dictatorship? Can we change the rule makers based on elections as in a representative republic? Not if the rule makers are unelected. Can we change the laws by voting, as in a democracy? Not if the laws are put forth by appointed bodies.

One victim of this dictatorship is a welder from Wyoming who lives on a farm with his family. Remember who the victims of government abuse are when the excuses go flying that the EPA is necessary to “reign in big business” who would otherwise pollute our waters without restraint. It is not corporations or big business who care about fines–protection money they can pay the EPA to keep quiet and mislead consumers about the real dangers posed by their companies, thus making the EPA just another piece of the crony-capitalist puzzle. No, the victims always seem to be farmers, laborers, tax payers, and the middle class.

So the family man from Wyoming who took a step towards self sufficiency and independence by building himself a stock pond on his 80 acres can now be issued a $75,000 per day fine. The EPA claims the authority to deprive this man daily of what it probably takes at least 6 months, possibly a year to earn as a welder. No courts, no laws, just the EPA depriving this man and his family of there right to property and due process enshrined in the Bill of Rights, specifically in this case by the Fifth amendment.

But not only has the Fifth amendment been violated by the EPA, but the Tenth as well. The Tenth amendment reads:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Well guess what, this welder who has so vociferously violated EPA regulations followed the rules of his State government when building his stock pond–but then it always seems to be the ones who follow the rules that the federal government “makes examples” out of. He got his state permit, and built his pond which as a stock pond is exempted from already illegitimate EPA regulations that governs bodies of water which can effect navigable waterways down stream.

Therefore not only has the EPA violated this man’s individual rights, it has violated the rights of the State of Wyoming and every individual that lives there to make their own rules, or make no rules when it comes to the environment, in accordance with the Tenth amendment. There is nothing in the Constitution that gives the federal government authority to regulate the environment, therefore it must be a state issue. But why would the State stand for such abuse at the hands of a central government?

Because long ago in 1913 states were deprived of their suffrage in Congress when the 17th amendment was passed, making Senators elected by popular vote in each state, instead of by the legislature of each state. When US Senators were elected by the state government, they would be able to do the bidding of the state at the federal level, which is why the Senate is considered “the upper House” of Congress. The people are represented by their Representative, while the State governments were represented by their Senators.

Of course the people of each state still influenced who got sent to DC as a US Senator, because they already elected the State Reps and State Senators who make up the legislature who elect the US Senator. By denying states their vote in Congress, it took away control state government had over the federal government, and allowed money to play a bigger role in electing US Senators; the bigger the race, the more that money can influence the outcome.

State Reps and State Senators win elections if they knock on every door in their district. US Reps need some money, but they can still win over their district with some hard campaigning. US Senators used to have to get votes from the legislature by talking to each of their co-workers, and promising that the interests of the State would be represented if they got sent to Washington. Now they just have to spend more money than their opponent, and the uninformed voters will be fooled by their commercials.

We have the power as the electorate to change these things, but our window of opportunity is rapidly slamming shut. We could still repeal the 17th amendment, and restore the vote each state was guaranteed in the Constitution. We could still restrain the federal government back to Constitutional size, empowering the States to implement what works, and cut the waste. We could still be a free society, but not if we continue to allow control to slip through the fingers of the people, of the individual, in favor of edicts by unelected bodies basing their rules and actions on nothing more than their own desire for power.

How Rigged are Presidential Elections?

C-Romney_Obama_DebateA new documentary called “Mitt” airs an interesting perspective on Mitt Romney’s attitude during the 2012 election. The film apparently shows how pessimistic Romney was that he could win the general election, even after the abysmal debate performance of Barack Obama. The documentary shows a side of Mitt that most have not seen, and it offers new material for a discussion on how “rigged” the electoral process is in the United States.

The big quote that blogs are showcasing from the documentary “Mitt” which aired at the Sundance Film Festival, is seen towards then end of the film when Romney admits, “In some ways, we kind of had to steal the Republican nomination. Our party is Southern, evangelical and populist. And you’re Northern, and you’re Mormon, and you’re rich. And these do not match well with our party.”

The documentary will be available on Netflix later today, so I can not yet say whether this quote is taken out of context, or further explained in the movie. But many Ron Paul supporters are not surprised by the revelation. When I was outside the Republican National Convention in Tampa in 2012, Ron Paul supporters were already lining the streets, protesting the treatment of delegates who were excluded from the nominating convention, in apparent violation of contest rules. Some say that Paul had the delegates to win the nomination if proper procedures were followed, but that they were shut out and the entire nomination process was scripted, having already been decided.

At the time, I think everyone assumed the primary was “stolen” by Romney because he wanted to be president. But now, further speculation has been brought on by Mitt’s apparent defeatist attitude while running. Was Romney just a placeholder so that a real anti-establishment candidate could not challenge Obama? Were top Republicans complicit in handing the election to Obama by ensuring that a “Tea Party Candidate” could not win the nomination, and speak truth to power?

I did not think there was any such conspiracy, unless you count the media ignoring and marginalizing of Ron Paul as a conspiracy. I figured there were just a lot of voters who incorrectly thought nominating a “moderate” would be a better strategy to defeating Obama in the general election. Unfortunately these people are just victims of media bias. The media wanted everyone to think that Ron Paul was crazy and unelectable in order to get an actual unelectable wishy washy candidate into the election, therefore insuring Obama’s victory. But now there seems to be a compelling argument that Romney, or at least top Republicans in the party, had a bigger political enemy than Obama.

So why not infer that winning the 2012 national election was never the primary goal? Romney would have loved to do it, but it wasn’t why he was running. He was running to win the Republican Primary and, thus, ensure there was no Tea Party candidate running against Obama.

He was just a spoiler.

I guess the debate is still open. But Republicans should take note of the adage, “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results”. Let’s not make the same mistake 3 elections running, and nominate an unelectable moderate over a true conservative.

Divide and Conquer: Don’t Play into the War on the Electorate

Divide and conquer. That is the strategy of our political leaders, and it is the reason why our elections never seem to change much in Washington. Nobody likes corruption, most of us are still bitter about the bailouts for crony-capitalists while individuals face foreclosure, we all want to be safe, and most of us don’t want to be spied on. So you might think that we would regularly clean out the House, which the electorate has the power to do every 2 years. We could also be firing 1/3 of the Senate every 2 years. We don’t do this because we are conquered by these political elite who have effectively divided us. Even though “both sides” agree that our government is just terrible, proven by congressional approval ratings in the single digits for the Republican House and Democratic Senate, people still generally think all the problems stem from the other side of the aisle.

This does not mean there are not general things we can gather about each major party, and therefore agree with or disagree with on the whole. But what we should really be doing is filtering our “own party” in order to be sure that when the general election comes around, it is about the person and not the caricature that the party has created. My sympathies may have in the past fallen more in line with Republicans, but barely, and only because of the issues that are important to me. Even so, there are probably fewer than 10 politicians in Congress who I actually think are good politicians. Scratch that, good politician is an oxymoron.

I get more angry when I see McCain or McConnell vote for government corruption and crony capitalism because they supposedly represent me. And it is people like them and George Bush who made me realize that simply voting Republican will not solve these issues, because there is little difference between the majority of politicians in both major parties. Many egregious violations of Americans’ Fourth Amendment rights can be traced back to the Bush administration, the Patriot Act, and the fear mongering stirred up just after 9/11 which effectively stole our rights. The reason this was able to happen was because we had been divided by our politicians who exploited the 9/11 terrorist attacks in order to hide their true agendas to seek power and control.

And when Obama came into office, the same sort of division took place. One of the major things Obama ran on was reigning in Wall Street corruption. Yet while we were debating about whether or not Obama was born in America, he was busy appointing a Department of Justice entirely comprised of lawyers from firms that defended big Wall Street clients mired in corruption.

Republicans play on some of their base’s prejudices by stirring the pot with questionable remarks about homosexuals and minorities, which just alienates anyone who might otherwise agree with important stances like fiscal responsibility, and upholding the Bill of Rights. Likewise Democrats will exploit racial tensions and gender issues to gain an upper hand in elections, alienating those who might agree with stances such as curbing defense spending and decreasing foreign intervention. The point here is that we should not be blinded by the divisive rhetoric. Politicians hide behind their parties, while we should be voting for the person—or if you’re brave, opting out of the system. Republican voters for too long took the bait and blamed all the budget issues, destruction of the Bill of Rights, and crony capitalism on Democrats, while their party had an equal hand in spending too much, and empowering federal agencies to violate our rights.

According to a Gallup poll 72% of Americans now say that big government is the biggest threat to America in the future, while 21% point to big business. Even the majorities in each party agree that big government is our biggest threat, 92% of Republicans, 71% of independents, and 56% of Democrats. 20% more people now feel the government is the biggest threat than in 2009. But if they use that as “our chance to take power” from a Republican standpoint, then they sacrifice any real gains that could be made in decreasing the scope of government, and maintaining our Constitutional rights.

Why not put party aside and maybe some less polarizing figures would run for office. Not less polarizing as in “middle of the road” crony capitalist status quo. Less polarizing as in, maybe we should address this whole immigration thing without talking about deporting teenagers who don’t know the language in their “home country”. Maybe we can talk about passing a balanced budget without pretending this will mean the death of single mothers and gas chambers for the elderly. Maybe we can all agree that the government has grown too large, and have a mature conversation about ending subsidies and reforming welfare. Maybe we can discuss the possibility that state governments should have rights without accusations of racism being fired off like artillery.

There are some encouraging signs, like the left and the right coming together on certain privacy issues involving illegal spying on citizens by our government. The libertarian movement among the Republican party is also helping to oppose interventionist foreign policy as many Democrats demanded during the Bush administration; and Obama’s continuation of ultra-interventionist foreign policy proves that this is not simply a party issue.

Let’s steal the power elite’s tactics of war, and divide and conquer our own politicians. Not between left and right, but on the same side of the aisle. Divide the true Republicans from the power seekers. Divide the true Democrats from the control freaks. Conquer the undesirable elements in each party, and deliver better candidates to general elections. This does not have to be a mushy “all move towards the center” movement, it can be a movement where each side actually decides what they stand for, and are not given the reality TV version of politics. Then when it comes to the general election we can discuss the actual consequences of legislation instead of hurling insults across the aisle.

There is plenty of room for debate and differences of opinion, but it should be on substantive issues instead of the pathetic squabbles initiated by corrupt politicians and their media lap dogs. Is Santa white? Why was this ever debated on a “serious” cable news station? What good could possibly come from taking a position on this? The only possible outcome of debating about if Santa is white is to divide people further in the race category where tensions are already reeling because of the political exploitation that is entrenched in American racial issues. Next let’s debate if only racists dream of a white Christmas.

Can we just have a serious talk about the intrusiveness of a plethora of government agencies into our everyday lives that never used to be areas touched by government? Can we talk about if our rights should still exist when our information is stored on a hard drive instead of on paper? Let’s talk about our foreign policy to see if intervening overseas really keeps us safer, or just enriches the military-industrial-complex? Can you consider the possibility that an open border puts America at risk, until markets are free enough to respond to that risk? Can you consider the possibility that the government should not be defining religious terms, and legislating morality?

So here’s my plan. The left and the right come together on one issue this next election: term limits. We all agree that anyone who opposes term limits will not survive the primary, and we don’t stop paying attention right after the election. Can we just remain vigilant for 2 years? 2 years, that’s all it would take to make sure that all those congressman who promised they would pass term limits actually do it, and if they don’t, we impose our own term limit as voters on them particularly, and elect someone who will vote for term limits.

And if that is too much to ask, why not pass a Constitutional Amendment limiting all congressmen to 6 years in office (and say abolishing Congressional pensions), that’s one term for Senators and 3 for Representatives. With the increased turnover in Congress, the incumbent’s advantage would be reduced, and incumbents are the worst perpetrators of party politics, while also being able to use name recognition to avoid answering tough questions, and being accessible to voters. There is hope for us all, we just need to realize that it is our oppressors in DC that are the enemy, not necessarily the people that vote for them. Refuse to be divided, talk to those across the aisle, discuss real issues, and you might just realize that the evil caricature is a divide and conquer construction by the political elite who care about nothing more than maintaining their own power.

Christie Uses Fear to Attack Paul

In a country where the election cycle never sleeps, Presidential contenders try not to miss an opportunity to batter their opponents. At a Governor’s forum last week New Jersey Governor Chris Christie used fear to defend NSA spying on Americans, criticizing Senator Rand Paul for his Libertarian positions, including Paul’s ridicule of the NSA because of their widespread surveillance policies. Christie has been a middle of the road type, trying to attract votes from each side of the isle, which is especially necessary in his home state of New Jersey. Apparently he thinks this is a winning strategy to capture the white house, possibly failing to see the similarities between himself, Mitt Romney, and John McCain as wishy-washy ideologically inconsistent political opportunists. Christie has exposed the fact that he is actual a progressive, by using fear and sympathy to appeal to voters emotions, instead of logic, reason, and evidence to form policy.

“These esoteric, intellectual debates — I want them to come to New Jersey and sit across from the widows and the orphans and have that conversation. And they won’t, because that’s a much tougher conversation to have,” Christie said.

“The next attack that comes, that kills thousands of Americans as a result, people are going to be looking back on the people having this intellectual debate and wondering whether they put …” Christie said before trailing off.

According to Politico Christie also criticized a “strain of libertarianism” that he believe is “a very dangerous thought”. His tactics are so obvious to anyone that pays attention. Parade some orphaned children and widows in front of the audience, and anything he says is right: Every time you seek to protect your constitutional rights against unreasonable search and seizure, you’re inviting another terrorist attack! You’re laughing in the face of the children and wives of people murdered by terrorists, just because you want to exercise your measly little constitutional rights! Chris Christie has no problem fear mongering and shamelessly using orphans and widows as his political props to prove a point.

And one of the biggest jokes Christie told was that Americans are safer because of Bush and Obama’s policies!

“President Obama has done nothing to change the policies of the Bush administration in the war on terrorism. And I mean practically nothing,” he said. “And you know why? Cause they work.”

Except that there have been terror attacks in America since then (Boston Marathon, Fort Hood), Americans have been killed by terrorists overseas (Benghazi), and terrorists have made it past safe guards, and only failed because of faulty equipment (the underwear bomber). Chris Christie might as well have been criticizing Benjamin Franklin for saying that “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” I guess Christie thinks shipping American troops around the world and busting down some doors keeps us safer, but in reality it just ensures perpetual war. I guess Christie has no problem with the ramping up of the surveillance state, and of the militarized police state which puts every American civilian at risk.

The fact is you do not need to violate people’s rights in order to keep America safer; that is merely an excuse for power hungry politicians who want control. Which is why I trust Rand Paul’s approach, upholding individual rights and attacking actual threats to our country in a constitutional way. Here’s the statement from Paul’s office in response to Christie.

“If Gov. Christie believes the constitutional rights and the privacy of all Americans is ‘esoteric’, he either needs a new dictionary, or he needs to talk to more Americans, because a great number of them are concerned about the dramatic overreach of our government in recent years,” Doug Stafford, a senior adviser to Paul, said in a statement to POLITICO. “Defending America and fighting terrorism is the concern of all Americans, especially Sen. Paul. But it can and must be done in keeping with our Constitution and while protecting the freedoms that make America exceptional.”

GOP Continues to Battle the Base

On Friday Scott Rasmussen wrote an article called “Republican Establishment Declares War on GOP Voters”. While I believe a more appropriate title would be, “Republican Establishment Opens New Front in the Long Fought War on GOP Voters”, I do agree with most of Mr. Rasmussen’s analysis. He claims that the fiscal cliff deal is being sold as a bi-partisan agreement by establishment GOP, while 7 out of 10 Republican voters disapproved of the deal, and 7 out of 10 Democratic voters approved of it.

Establishment GOP thinks it has a primary problem, because incumbents who have been in D.C. for decades, and are essentially liberals in disguise, have been losing some primaries. Since some of these races then went to the Democrats, the GOP uses this as proof that the Tea Party is harming the GOP’s prospects. But this line of thinking only makes sense if the ultimate goal is to have a Republican majority in both houses. Well, seeing as “government spending in America has gone up in every year since 1954 regardless of whether Republicans or Democrats are in charge”, my goal is not simply a Republican majority in both houses–an establishment GOP majority would not solve our problems, at best it would slow down the pace at which we are sprinting towards dictatorship.

So, according to Politico, the Washington team is gearing up a new effort to protect incumbents and limit the ability of Republican voters to successfully challenge establishment candidates.

That makes sense to those whose sole goal is winning a majority in Congress rather than changing the course of government policy. Seen from the outside, though, it sounds like the professional politicians are saying that the only way to win is to pick more candidates like the insiders. Hearing that message, the reaction of many Republican and conservative voters is, “Why bother?”

The GOP’s real primary problem is suppression of legitimate, free market, limited government, pro-constitution candidates. Ron Paul was shunned by the party establishment, despite being the only consistent limited government candidate for President. The GOP pulled dirty moves to suppress his influence at the national convention, and went so far as to kick Ron Paul delegates out of the convention center. Now that’s a good way to pump up the base before a tough election! No, libertarians, Paulites, and fiscal conservatives stayed home, because, “Why bother?”.

Scott Rasmussen’s remedy is for the GOP establishment to act as mature party leaders, instead of attempting to retain political power, and special interests. He says that mature party leaders would look into why only 50% of Republicans have a positive opinion of the highest ranked Republican in the land, Speaker Boehner. Could it be because he is a traitor to the GOP base for kicking the most libertarian members of the caucus out of their assigned committee positions? Its okay to be ticked off, you aren’t alone, “two-thirds of Republican voters believe GOP officials in Washington have lost touch with the party’s base”. So why are we still here?

Are we still hoping to reform the GOP and make it into a libertarian Constitutionalist party?

To succeed, this course would have to include some painful medicine for the establishment, such as giving up corporate welfare programs that benefit their friends and allies. It also would require helping Republican voters identify primary candidates who challenge the establishment but could be effective on the campaign trail.

This is a much tougher course to follow; one that would benefit the party and the nation. Unfortunately, by seeking to protect the insiders from the voters, all indications are that most establishment Republicans would rather blame the voters and keep their perks.

Which is why my remedy is, start anew! Forget the pathetic establishment who cave to their no new taxes pledge. Forget the wimps who are ready to jump on the gun-banning bandwagon when they should be clearly articulating that guns in the hands of responsible citizens lowers crime. Forget the corporate cronies who won’t defend the free market because they made their money on pork, bailouts, subsidies, government backed loans, grants, or insider trading. We should not be satisfied by the candidate who won’t rob as much from us, or who only violates the bill of rights a little, or who expands government at a slower rate. Enough if enough.

In the 2014 elections a new party with libertarian constitutional roots should make it’s debut, circumventing GOP primaries, and preventing the projection of past Republican follies onto new candidates. Let’s call the new party the Vigilant Independent Party, or VIP. We will set a goal for a number of house seats to be claimed in the 2014 midterm elections by VIP’s, and collect pledges from the libertarian elements of the GOP that they will switch to the VIP if the goal is met. Then we can identify districts with strong libertarian majorities, or large swaths of independent voters, and field strong candidates from the district that will appeal to the grassroots, while being supported by the larger VIP movement.

The platform could include a multifaceted vigilance over our government and elected officials; fiscal responsibility, the restoration and protection of the bill of rights, non-aggressive foreign policy, and elimination of several government agencies. I’m thinking Ron Paul can help lead the charge, and collect a pledge from Senator Rand Paul. Rep. Amash, and other Republicans removed from their committee assignments by GOP leadership would be prime VIP pledges. The individual donors to the GOP can be scooped up to fund these VIP candidates who will truly represent the base’s ideals. Maybe even in my home state of Massachusetts, where over 50% of the electorate are registered independents, we can flip one of the 9 Democrat held House seats.

A man can dream, can’t he?

Direct Democracy’s Detriments

Most people believe that the more democracy which is present in our political system, the better off Americans are. Most states have ballot questions which is an example of direct democracy, the people vote on an issue and the outcome becomes law. While this can yield a positive outcome, it can just as often be negative if people do not research the referendum before voting. Direct democracy comes down to enacting what 51% of the voters want, but this means a minority has no real voice in direct democracy. I’m not just talking about racial minorities either; businessmen have historically been a persecuted minority. Direct democracy leads to mob rule, and if the mob has 51% of the votes, they can vote away the rights of the other 49%, or any smaller segment of the population.

This is why we have representatives who are accountable for their votes. This step of removing voters to one degree of separation between them and legislation means they cannot directly vote on bills, but they can still affect the way their representative votes on legislation by voting for him or withholding their vote from him . Although they do not always vote in the best way, representatives are supposed to make informed decisions on the legislation, where as voters at large cannot be held accountable to do the same. Since representatives are elected from only one district, the district can elect a new representative if the politician does not make informed decisions on legislation.

While it still seems like 51% of people are dictating the laws to the other 49%, this is not the case because each individual district is made up of a population different than the general population. This means what 51% of people in one district would vote for is different than what 51% of people in another district would vote for, although there are many overlapping agreements between voters in different districts.Voters have to take the votes they agreed with, and the votes they disagreed with and decide if this representative was close enough to their values to be reelected.

This is half of our legislature, representatives elected by the people to be the more informed voice of the people. The other half of the federal legislature is the Senate, who are also elected by the people ever since the 17th amendment to the Constitution was passed. This amendment made U.S. Senators from each state elected by the people directly, instead of being elected by the legislatures of each state. Before this, the state representatives and state senators voted for the U.S. Senators, which separated the people by another degree from the upper house of the federal government. This had some benefits. First, the state legislatures would often elect someone from their own chamber, meaning that person had already been directly elected by the people of their district, and then approved by their fellow lawmakers or co-workers. A person you work with on a day to day basis will be more informed about who you are than the general population; they know through personal interaction, conversations, and experience with the candidate.

These days however, with Senators being elected by popular vote, the general population gets to know the Senate candidates through alternating 30 second television ads in which each side will take turns propagating their positions and attacking their opponent. The person with more money gets more turns to showcase themselves in front of uninformed voters ready and willing to vote away any minority’s rights if it benefits them in the short term. But also, what’s the point in having another representative of the people in federal government, when we already have the House of Representatives? The only difference is that the general population voting for these Senators is larger, has less connection to the candidate, and is therefore more easily deceived. Do you have more access to your state rep, or you U.S. Senator? The larger the electorate, the easier it is for a politician to hide behind uninformed voters who fall for lofty rhetoric. In most districts in the U.S. people have at least some access to their representative, but not real influence on their Senator.

When Senators were elected by the legislatures of each state, these state politicians were their constituents. With the general electorate still easily able to access the state politicians, these politicians will take the brunt of unpopular votes by the U.S. Senator, meaning they will be very careful who they send down to D.C. They also have the information pertaining to how federal legislation will affect their state, and they have an advocate for their particular state in the Senate. If the legislature of one state does not approve of a Senate bill, chances are their Senator would likewise not approve (or else risk being voted out by the state legislature at the next election). If a federal law is bad for the states, Senators elected by state legislatures are more likely to vote it down, because their bosses, or constituents, are the government of that state. The people of that state are much less likely to understand–or care about–any negative effects of federal legislation on state government.

27 states have sued the federal government over Obamacare. If each of those states still had control over their Senators, 54 Senators would have come from states, elected by state legislatures, which did not approve of Obamacare. The bill would have been unable to pass, because informed decision makers chose who to send to D.C. The state legislatures knew this bill would impose extra burdens on the state and be a detriment to the economy as well as healthcare. These state governments don’t want more hoops to jump through, and the politicians don’t want to have to defend a vote for a Senator who imposed deteriorating healthcare and increased costs along with worsening the economy. It is easier for a Senator to defend (and manipulate the implications of) their terrible votes to the general population of the state than it is to defend a bad vote to a few hundred politicians who elected the Senator as their voice in the federal government, and are actively involved in state government on a day to day basis. That Senator simply is not going to be able to pull the wool over the eyes of his former coworkers who have everyday experience interpreting bills, and implementing law.

Today state governments have no representation in the federal government. We have moved closer to direct democracy, and power has been taken from the states and centralized with the federal government. Sold as something that would empower the people, and give us more voice in federal government, in effect it gave us less choice, because of the ease with which 51% of the population can be tricked into voting for a bad Senator. States are now dictated to by the federal government, instead of being in control of the federal government. The founding fathers put together an intricate system of checks and balances in order to prevent the federal government from gaining too much power, and returning us to a monarchy, thus nullifying the benefits gained during the American Revolution. We would be wise to abide by their system if we value the protections of the individual inalienable rights of every person laid out in the Bill of Rights.