Sunday, April 30, 2006

Frederic Bastiat

Frederic Bastiat was French. What happened? But then, looking at ourselves we can see it happening.
"Now since man is naturally inclined to avoid pain - and since labor is pain in itself - it follows that men will resort to plunder whenever plunder is easier than work. History shows this quite clearly. And under these conditions, neither religion nor morality can stop it."

Actually religion and morality are used to justify the plunder.
"The state is the great fiction by which everybody tries to live at the expense of everybody else."

Say it aint so joe, say it aint so.

I've heard the name Robin Hood used several times when talking about the "plunder". I guess they where trying to justify the "safety net" by comparing Robin Hood with the government's social programs. But didn't Robin Hood take the money from the Sheriff and Prince John (government)? Didn't the Sheriff and Prince John take (tax) that money from the workers (Midddle class)?

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Open Boarders or Open Doors

It never ceases to amaze me how young adults and the middle-aged dismiss the knowledge available through those who are "older". I wonder how much has been lost by throwing it away to an "old peoples home". The countless stories, wisdom, and history that some have, but no sponge in sight.

This past Easter, while visiting my parents in Delaware, my opinion on a subject shifted because of my father. We were looking at our birth certificates, family pictures and, what was, I think his most treasured document. It was the first and only one I'd ever seen. Thousands of people have died at sea, and countless more trying to flee their countries trying to get even the chance at one.

My father's Certificate of Naturalization is pretty impressive once you realize what was done back in the early 50s to get one. He had learned a trade while still in Germany, and had requested to come to America. The leg work/paperwork he had to do just for that would cause most natural born citizens to give up. Once he was approved and found a sponsor he came over. He joined the Army and served for 3 years and still he wasn't granted citizenship. He knew the five rights in the First Amendment, luckily they didn't ask him the characters on the Simpsons. He also was required to know this countries history (more I'll wager then most members of Congress do). On top of this, English was required to pass the citizenship test, not just haphazardly, but better then High School graduates of today. There were no bilingual schools, signs or instructions. It was English sink or swim.

I can still remember being younger and hearing his contempt for bilingual instructions, signs, and that ever irritating "press 2 for Spanish". At first I was a little taken aback, but after pondering it, if anyone has a right to complain about the PC bilingual craze, it would be a immigrant that was Required to learn English, sink or swim. Hell, I'd wager most would say he and others like him earned it. Funny, a man can swear to defend a country, yet he isn't given citizenship. It must really grate naturalized citizens to here amnesty for illegals. I wonder how many men and women died defending this country for the chance to become citizens. Yet Illegals DEMAND it?

Now before this I believed in, open boarders and amnesty, or at most token fines. But after hearing what my father had to go through not to mention millions of others. I believe I was wrong, my mind wasn't changed for some silly sound bite like "they're taking jobs away from Americans" but by history.

I think the term open boarders is wrong. A house has walls, windows and doors, I believe in an open door policy, don't come through the window. Yes there's a line at the door, but if you want it bad enough EARN it. Those in the future that try to come through the window a banned from ever coming through the door.

Those who have come through the window already, they're illegal, come forward and pay the fine, say, double what would have been paid through taxes at minimum wage for 5 years (monthly installments are fine). No, this does not make any eligible for Social Security benefits, it's a fine. After the fine is paid the illegal immigrant is able to apply legally (end of the line buddy). Those who feel they're already over here, so "why bother", if they're caught it's to jail, until the fine is paid. Then deported and banned from ever entering the country again.

Now some may say how can one in jail pay their fine off. Well I found this little tidbit in the Constitution, Amendment XII, Sec 1
"Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted
shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their
Speaking of the Constitution. There's one reason that some come here and that's to give birth so that their children are citizens. This was brought up at Free NY awhile ago, and being a constructionist I'd have to say they are citizens, yet the parents are here illegally. An Amendment to the Constitution should be proposed stating that only children born to parents legally in the country or it's territories are to be citizens. Those who are born to parents illegally in the country after ratification, no make that the submission of the Amendment shall not be citizens.

Congressman Ron Paul's article says it better.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Show Boating the 30+ Year Show

It's really ironic, today I was looking at boats in the area. I've wanted to get one for some time now about a 26 to 30 foot sailboat. After all it wouldn't cost that much to run with wind power.

I stopped window-shopping, picked up the Buffalo News and there it is, Senate Panel Demands Oil Co. Tax Records. Now, I know what everyone’s saying, "George, how is shopping for a boat and the Senate looking into oil profits ironic?"

Well, it's the show boating, how many times has the Senate looked at this and every time they come out sheepishly with their tails between their legs and whisper that they found nothing. Did the newspapers come up with the trick of yelling accusations and whispering retractions or did they learn it from congress? The chicken or the egg.

Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, the committee's chairman, said the panel was concerned about high profits and executive compensation at oil companies.

Who is worth what they get paid for here, the Senators or CEO's of oil companies? How much money did the Senate make for its shareholders last year?

What the Senator should be concerned about is, the HIGH taxes imposed on us and the wasteful spending of it by himself and his "distinguished" partners (in crime).

I have a choice weather to purchase gas or at least cut my consumption significantly. I can ride my bike to work, car pool, get a small gas efficient car of better yet a GEM. I could always move CLOSE to work or find employment closer to where I live. But then why should I be inconvenienced. After all, that's what this country was built on right? Comfort?

Oh, the noise from the leftist socialist, whining about the evil corporations taking advantage of them.

"The oil companies are gouging us." (Um that's what you said the last twenty times).

"Why do they need to make such high profits?" (That's what they're in business for)

" We have to buy their oil, they can charge what they want."(no you don't, and no if they priced it to high people would find alternatives)

"We have no choice" (Unlike taxes, you do, find alternatives)

Not one of these points will be heard in the halls of the capital. Why? Because it wouldn’t get any votes. Americans have become dependant on the government to make them comfortable. We hate being inconvenienced. We’ve replaced the “pursuit of happiness” with the right to happiness and "Liberty" with the freedom "from". The principles this country was founded on have been bastardized.

This boat show is getting old, same old models for the last 30 plus years.

While trying to find out just how many times this boat show has come to town I found a good post and several comments at eidelblog, about, ironically the last time the Senate did this last year.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Taxes vs. Patriotism

With tax day just passing and seeing the flocks of sheep filing (pun intended) through the post office, myself included (only due to the threat of jail not from any sence of duty). And a reminder at Free NY in the form of a post about Marc Stevens.

Well, how about: “What if tax day came and no one filed?” I like what Hopper said in A Bug’s Life:

“You let one ant stand up to us, then they all might stand up! Those puny little ants outnumber us a hundred to one and if they ever figure that out there goes our way of life! It’s not about food, it’s about keeping those ants in line. That’s why we’re going back!” (emphasis mine)

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights that among these are Life,Liberty, and the Pursuite of happiness- That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their powers from Consent of the Governed, that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these Ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it,......."

Now if we could get the ants to read the Declaration of Independence. But then I'm sure my "patriotism" is questioned by some, just by quoting the Declaration like I did.

Ironic isn't it?

Monday, April 17, 2006

Anaheim's Laissez-Faire Solution

Yesterday at Free NY in a post about Pittsburg and the blighted areas, they referenced an article in
Yes, Anaheim -- the home of Disneyland -- is a big city like Pittsburgh. Its population of 328,000, though richer and more diverse, is nearly identical. It's a major-league sports town -- with two arenas. And its original downtown was pretty much destroyed in the '70s by urban renewal and eminent-domain abuse.

Urban renewal? What corporation was that? Oh, that was a government program, a bunch of "we know what’s best" politicians and Bureaucrats. Eminent domain abuse? What corporation or business was responsible for upholding property rights? Oh that was the government’s job? Gee, sooooooo, they screwed the city up by doing something they had no business doing and not doing what they should have done. If that was a company they'd either fire the CEO or give him millions in stock options.
Mayor Pringle, a mid-40s Republican elected in 2002, is a certified madman when it comes to getting local government out of the way of progress.

Government out of the way? What's he think this is a Ayn Rand Novel? Who will protect the consumer from the evil entrepreneur? Who will ensure they sell the right things and open the right businesses? It is nice though to have an opinion in a previous rant somewhat verified as a good idea. Toot Toot!!

By decentralizing bureaucracies, relaxing regulations and zoning codes, waiving home improvement fees, declaring business tax holidays and emphasizing market solutions to things like a citywide Wi-Fi system, Pringle has created what he calls a "freedom-friendly" approach to fostering economic growth and redevelopment.

Dare we say it? Free Market or better yet laissez-faire .
Anaheim's massive urban redevelopment project is the 807-acre Platinum Triangle. Pringle's free-market enticements -- offering market incentives, cutting taxes, nurturing competition and protecting property rights -- have attracted billions in diverse investments, reports Orange County Register editorial writer Steven Greenhut.

Hold on here! You mean to tell me that billions have been invested (private investment) into an area AFTER; decentralizing bureaucracies, relaxing regulations and zoning codes, declaring business tax holidays, emphasizing market solutions?

Now picture a Buffalo Water Front "privately owned", with the same policies, or Downtown Niagara Falls. Think about all the blighted residential areas with; "waiving home improvement fees".

Somehow I doupt that any of our "leaders" will visit Anaheim or even look at, let alone consider that as a solution. After all the area tends to rely on socilalist ideas rather then real solutions.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Extremist Laws, for your own "Safety"

In the 14 Apr06 Anchorage Daily News “Court sinks drug paraphernalia law”

One problem the court found with the paraphernalia laws was that they could apply to pharmacists as well as potheads.

Police spokesman Lt. Paul Honeman said the current law is clear and that police don't arbitrarily arrest people for owning household or medical items. "We use what we would consider the commonsense approach,"

Umm, really, okay. But what about these, these or, these?

This article and the law passed by the self-righteous and overzealous politicians caused a back flash from my days in the Marines.

While stationed at Quantico, as a young Lance Corporal one unit I was with was the Artillery Demonstration Unit (ADU) or whispered in certain circles "Alcohol and Drug Unit" (That first urinalysis nailed about 50% of the battery, so I was told). Due to this not so honorable title the officers where not to happy, and began to take corrective action. First those "busted" on the "Pee Pee" test where given an all inclusive vacation to the Drug & Alcohol Rehab Platoon, kind of like Boot Camp all over again. This came as a big surprise to those that would use the phrase "What are they going to do, shave our heads and send us back to boot camp?"

Back at ADU, every Friday we'd have room/uniform inspections. One Lance Corporal (LCpl) was a big fan of Alice in Wonderland (ya right). He had a poster of the caterpillar on the mushroom, smoking out of his water pipe. One Captain ordered it be taken down as "drug paraphernalia". Needless to say the LCpl argued that it wasn't about weed (ya right). No surprise he lost the poster.

Now the military is not the same as civilian life. I'm not suggesting the Captain over reacted; on the contrary it's the same thing I would have done several years later as a Platoon Sergeant. But when I raised my hand several times and swore to protect and defend the Constitution with my life, I knew I was giving up the very rights in the Constitution. Maybe this is why when the President, Congress and the Supreme Court trample on it, I see red. I didn't swear to protect it with my life to see the meaning changed by public opinion, the whims of some pompous, spoon fed aristocrat, or even because some lawyer in a black robe decided it was a "Living Document". I did it because that was what my father before me did, the love for Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness, and the knowledge that that Document guaranteed and protected our rights from an over bearing government.

Now, if the court hadn't ruled the way they did, could your daughters Alice in Wonderland poster have been next? Or why not the book itself? And ask yourself this. Would you feel confident she'd be allowed to take the poster to school for show and tell?.................................Even now?

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Perception vs Reality

Today's Buffalo News had a small article Ithaca high school bans Confederate flag insignia
"We have found that the display of the flag in such forms has caused and continues to cause feelings of ill will," Principal Joseph Wilson wrote. "Such feelings in turn have led to disruptions to our operations and educational process."

Okay so what your saying is there’s a lack of discipline in your school, and the only way you can control it is by banning the Confederate flag. Now do you have the same policy for ANY other item some student might find offensive? After all when I went to school we found Disco to be offensive.
She said the insignia, which appeared most often on belt buckles or T-shirts, has led to arguments and fights.

This might be going out on a limb but this seems like the perfect opportunity to TEACH history and instruct them in civil discussion. But then in a country where the "Right not to be offended" trumps Freedom of Speech.
The insignia from the Civil War-era flag is regarded by some as symbol of slavery and segregation, while others view it is a symbol of Southern heritage or rural pride.

That’s what you get with watered down history. Never mind that it was "Old Glory" that flew on the slave ships, owned by Northern Companies.

Maybe the faculty should draw up a lesson plan and teach a "history lesson" about the Bars and Stars. In it they could ask some of the following questions to their students;

1. Why did the Emancipation Proclamation exclude most of West Virginia and certain counties in Louisiana? Could it because they didn't secede?

2. How could General Grant, the Head of Union Forces keep his slaves until after the war was over?

3. Why did slaves and free black men fight for the south?

4. What is the 10th Amendment in the Constitution, and how could it apply to the above questions?

Walter Williams, an Economics Professor at George Mason University has written several articles about this and related issues.

The flap over the Confederate flag is not quite as simple as the nation's race experts make it. They want us to believe the flag is a symbol of racism. Yes, racists have used the Confederate flag, but racists have also used the Bible and the U.S. flag. Should we get rid of the Bible and lower the U.S. flag? Black civil rights activists and their white liberal supporters who're attacking the Confederate flag have committed a deep, despicable dishonor to our patriotic black ancestors who marched, fought and died to protect their homeland from what they saw as Northern aggression. More

And since I can't get enough of this guy (who with one CSPAN spot, turned me from complacent Republican to a stark raving Libertarian) here's some more of his writings.

The Real Lincoln
Secession or Nullification
Why The Civil War

Saturday, April 08, 2006

Victims of the Winless War

It's amazing how far our government will go to make it look like they're winning a war. No, not that one, this war has been going on much longer.

Now we have police departments along with those at the federal level who, are sworn to protect "Us from Ourselves", doing what looks like framing people. Story

“They only sent me to Indian stores…they wanted me to say things like ‘I need it to go cook’ or ‘Hurry up, I’ve got to get home and finish a cook’,” said an undercover informant in a sworn statement attached to the ACLU’s legal papers. “The officers told me that the Indians’ English wasn’t good, and they wouldn’t say a lot so it was important for me to make these kinds of statements.” The informant, listed as John Doe #2, must remain anonymous for fear of retaliation by law enforcement.

So, the officers knew their target (victim) probably had no clue what the informant was talking about. After all if a guy were buying aluminum foil, cooking fuel and matchbooks, I'd think he was having a barbeque. I could see the head lines now "SWAT Team Descends on Memorial Day Picnic at Disabled Vets Area. Dozens dead!!!" If you think that's a stretch the Free New York Blog posted some examples.

The ACLU broke it down as follows:

South-Asian-owned stores were nearly 100 times more likely to be targeted by Operation Meth Merchant than white-owned stores in the area.

By the time Operation Meth Merchant was completed, almost 20 percent of the South-Asian-owned stores in the area were indicted, compared to only 0.2 percent of stores owned by whites or other ethnic groups.

Operation Meth Merchant resulted in the arrest of 49 people, 44 of whom are South Asian, and 33 of whom have the last name Patel.

Operation Meth Merchant targeted 24 stores for investigation, 23 of which are owned by South Asians. This, despite the fact that approximately 80 percent of area stores are owned by whites or other ethnic groups, according to the ACLU’s investigation.

The officials directing Operation Meth Merchant had evidence that at least 16 white-owned stores in the area sold products used to manufacture methamphetamine, and yet failed to investigate any of them. These stores include Avaco, Bell's Smokeshop, Bi-Lo, Breezy Top, Citgo Quikmart, Dollar General, Family Dollar, Food Lion, Fred's, Home Depot, Jerrell's Food Mart, Lowe's, Sam's Club, and Wal-mart.

The officials directing Operation Meth Merchant have failed to disclose the existence of any evidence against the vast majority of the 23 South-Asian-owned stores prior to targeting them for investigation.

The hardest part about this is I don't care for the ACLU that much, kind selective in their defending the Constitution (Gee they could be Supreme Court Justices) but with the way things are going......

Are the officials involved with this just racist (doubt it), are they that focused they didn't see the big picture (doubt it), could it be Laziness (hmmmmm) or could it be that the War on Drugs has destroyed the Constitution to the point that if it's about drugs, law abiding citizens rights play second fiddle? Which brings up the question, where was the ACLU when private property was being confiscated during drug busts and not returned after charges being dropped?

Monday, April 03, 2006

The Real American Dream

Yolanda and Rogelio Garcia Sr. illegally crossed the boarder about 25 years ago. They have never been on welfare or "used" the "system" and are now citizens. They made their living by collecting cans and have sent their three kids (American citizens) to college. (full story)

Would this mean that with hard work and determination you can succeed?

Or faced with a choice;
His mom gave him a street class that forced him to picture a future without an education.

"They told me, 'you have the option — what we are doing, or something else that you love to do,'" said Rogelio.

Illegal immigration is a problem, and we do need to watch our boarders. But the Garcia's are (with the BIG exception of being illegal) the type of immigrants that made this country. There are some that come here to "milk the system", but a great portion of those born here do the same. It's part of human nature to get as much as you can for the least, but self worth curtails that in most of us. You can't change human nature but we can change the "system".

Change it so those who want the Real American Dream, can pursue it.